6.8/10
29,956
87 user 31 critic

Can't Buy Me Love (1987)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 14 August 1987 (USA)
A nerdy outcast secretly pays the most popular girl in school one thousand dollars to be his girlfriend.

Director:

Steve Rash
Reviews
Popularity
2,019 ( 357)

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Prime Video

ON DISC
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Loverboy (1989)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Randy is still unfocused after 2 years in college. His dad will no longer pay tuition and Randy gets a job delivering pizzas. Several cute cougars pay him $200 for pizza delivery and "services rendered". Their husbands?

Director: Joan Micklin Silver
Stars: Patrick Dempsey, Kate Jackson, Robert Ginty
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

When Keith goes out with Amanda, the girl of his dreams, Amanda's ex-boyfriend plans to get back at Keith. Meanwhile, Keith's best friend, tomboy Watts, realizes she has feelings for Keith.

Director: Howard Deutch
Stars: Eric Stoltz, Mary Stuart Masterson, Lea Thompson
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A poor girl must choose between the affections of dating her childhood sweetheart or a rich but sensitive playboy.

Director: Howard Deutch
Stars: Molly Ringwald, Jon Cryer, Harry Dean Stanton
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A noble underachiever and a beautiful valedictorian fall in love the summer before she goes off to college.

Director: Cameron Crowe
Stars: John Cusack, Ione Skye, John Mahoney
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A girl's "sweet" sixteenth birthday becomes anything but special, as she suffers from every embarrassment possible.

Director: John Hughes
Stars: Molly Ringwald, Anthony Michael Hall, Justin Henry
Adventure | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A babysitter must battle her way through the big city after being stranded there with the kids she's looking after.

Director: Chris Columbus
Stars: Elisabeth Shue, Maia Brewton, Keith Coogan
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A group of friends, just out of college, struggle with adulthood.

Director: Joel Schumacher
Stars: Demi Moore, Rob Lowe, Andrew McCarthy
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A teenager has to deal with his girlfriend dumping him among family crises, homicidal paper boys, and a rival skier.

Director: Savage Steve Holland
Stars: John Cusack, David Ogden Stiers, Kim Darby
Weird Science (1985)
Comedy | Romance | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Two high school nerds use a computer program to literally create the perfect woman, but she turns their lives upside down.

Director: John Hughes
Stars: Anthony Michael Hall, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Kelly LeBrock
Summer School (1987)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Freddy the gym teacher has to teach remedial English in summer (high) school, if he wants tenure. As he can only teach gym and his students want fun, emphasis is on "field trips" - until he's fired unless all his students pass the test.

Director: Carl Reiner
Stars: Mark Harmon, Kirstie Alley, Robin Thomas
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Terry feels discriminated against when the summer jobs at Sun Tribune go to 2 guys. She decides to do something about it. She dresses like a guy and gets a haircut. Will students at the other high school notice? Girls notice "him".

Director: Lisa Gottlieb
Stars: Joyce Hyser, Clayton Rohner, Billy Jayne
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

An aspiring teenage cartoonist and his friends come to the aid of a singer trying to save her family property from developers.

Director: Savage Steve Holland
Stars: John Cusack, Demi Moore, Linda Warren
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Patrick Dempsey ... Ronald Miller
Amanda Peterson ... Cindy Mancini
Courtney Gains ... Kenneth Wurman
Tina Caspary ... Barbara
Seth Green ... Chuckie Miller
Sharon Farrell ... Mrs. Mancini
Darcy DeMoss ... Patty (as Darcy De Moss)
Dennis Dugan ... David Miller
Cloyce Morrow Cloyce Morrow ... Judy Miller
Devin DeVasquez ... Iris (as Devin Devasquez)
Eric Bruskotter ... Big John
Gerardo Mejía ... Ricky
Cort McCown ... Quint
Ami Dolenz ... Fran
Max Perlich ... Lester
Edit

Storyline

Ronald Miller is tired of being a nerd, and makes a deal with one of the most popular girls in school to help him break into the "cool" clique. He offers her a thousand dollars to pretend to be his girlfriend for a month. It succeeds, but he soon learns that the price of popularity may be higher than he expected. Written by Kevin Ackley <kackley1@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Ronald is making an investment in his senior year. He's hiring the prettiest cheerleader in school to be his girlfriend.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 August 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Boy Rents Girl See more »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,754,732, 16 August 1987

Gross USA:

$31,623,833

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$31,623,833
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Iris has intimate scenes with all three of the popular guys: with Big John at the first party at his house, with Ricky at the school dance, and with Ronald at the New Year's Eve party at Big John's house. See more »

Goofs

Ronald tells Cindy that the moon landing was on his birthday, which means his birthday is July 20th, 1969. After he fools around with Patty on the night of the dance, he marks a calendar and says "17 years, 3 months, and 5 days" was a long time to go that far with a girl. The dance was on October 16th, which means his birthday was July 11th. Based on the arrangement of days, he must be looking at a calendar for 1987, not 1986. See more »

Quotes

Chuckie Miller: What we have here is something I Just learned called the law of supply and demand. I shall supply you this remote control, but I'm going to demand, say, uh, two bucks.
Ronald Miller: Wrong! That is not how the economic theory works.
Chuckie Miller: Look, I learned it in seventh grade, not Harvard.
Ronald Miller: Okay, let me give you the theory of relativity. Either you put on Bandstand now, or I have one less relative.
Chuckie Miller: I'll put on Bandstand Just for you
See more »

Alternate Versions

UK theatrical version was edited by 1m 14sec to secure a PG rating. See more »

Connections

References The Buddy Holly Story (1978) See more »

Soundtracks

One for the Mockingbird
Written by Nick Van Eede
Performed by Cutting Crew (as The Cutting Crew)
Courtesy of Virgin Records America, Inc. and Siren Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Whatever happens to your popularity, stay yourself, don't change to please others.
19 January 2019 | by SpikeopathSee all my reviews

Can't Buy Me Love is directed by Steve Rash and written by Michael Swerdlick. It stars Patrick Dempsey and Amanda Peterson. Music is by Robert Folk and cinematography by Peter Lyons Collister.

Plot has Dempsey as nerdy outcast Ronald Miller, who fed up of not being popular pays Cindy Mancini (Peterson), the most popular girl in school, one thousand dollars to be his girlfriend.

The 1980s was awash with films of this ilk, the teen dramedy topped up by a big hearted message and a finale of punch the air worth. What it all comes down to is if the film can hold its head above water, not become too twee, and crucially have you smiling come the finale. As evidenced by its popularity among 80s cineastes of a certain age, Can't Buy Me Love delivers all that you expect from such fare.

The core theme is of course self acceptance, the attainment of such in amongst the scary world of teenage school years. This shines bright in spite of some rather unconvincing dialogue and contrived corny moments. Director Rash just about holds it together, ensuring that the charm of the lead actors holds weight for character engagement, even though for thematic depth the screenplay only skims over the surface.

The teenage dramedy would evolve considerably once the 80s was left behind, becoming more biting, daring and observational. Yet for those who lived and loved this type of film in the 80s, there's a lovely nostalgic glow to be gleaned from revisits to the likes of Can't Buy Me Love. Nothing wrong with that. 6.5/10


2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 87 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed