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Clifford Peache is the new kid in Lake View High School. Faced with all the stress that role entails he makes his situation worse by insulting Moody, the leader of a group of toughs who extort lunch money from kids. These punks pretend to be bodyguards for the kids to protect them from Linderman who, it is rumored, killed his brother in cold blood. Clifford befriends the sullen Linderman and hires him as his bodyguard. When Moody ups the ante, Linderman must decide whether fighting for what he believes in, with his haunted past and image, is justified.Written by
Rick Gregory <email@example.com>
Of all the teen flicks that came out of the 1980s, MY BODYGUARD is one of three that stands out as an intelligent and moving study of American adolescence that doesn't now look like a dated genre piece(THE BREAKFAST CLUB and SAY ANYTHING are the others). Sure, there's shaggy hair and all the other things that date the movie fashion-wise, but the characters shine with humanity and poignancy, and that makes the movie memorable. In fact, some could convincingly argue that the movie is all about the characters, people that movie audiences will care about. Add to that the situation of being the new kid and trying to survive the jungle of high school(something most every American teen can relate to), and you have a great little film. Chris Makepeace is the new kid who tranfers to a urban Chicago highschool from a private school and immediately runs afoul of school bully Matt Dillon. Searching for a solution to his predicament, Makepeace enlists Adam Baldwin, a silent, hulking classmate with a mysterious past, to protect him. What unfolds is a rare friendship between Makepeace and Baldwin, as we learn more about Baldwin's character and some terrible secrets he holds. Whether intentional or not, the film sends a message that the people we encounter everyday are just that, people with feelings and problems and not just the labels or stereotypes we assign them. Makepeace needs Baldwin for protection from Dillon, and Baldwin needs Makepeace's friendship to rescue him from the isolation he has endured as a result of past experiences. One unusual aspect of the movie is that several of the adult characters are sympathetic or even quirky, a rarity in teen films. Ruth Gordon shines as Makepeace's feisty grandmother, and Martin Mull puts in a turn as the bumbling but well-meaning father. And, unlike the nihilistic teens of today's current crop of movies, the teens(with the exception of Dillon and his cronies)are likable, friendly, and positive. They readily accept Makepeace and then Baldwin, after they see that the rumors about him are just that. This gives the movie a positive feel to it.
Definitely a winner. If you've ever been a teenager, wondered if you would belong, attended a high school or had to do battle with a bully, you'll find something to like about MY BODYGUARD.
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