With writer and director John Hughes passing away recently it made me realise that despite him creating a great many films in the eighties, I have only covered one of them so far on this site (The Breakfast Club if you’re interested). Â Time to put that to rights then with Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.
Ferris Bueller (Matthew Broderick) is a high school student who awakes one morning and decides the day is too nice to go to school, so fakes illness to deceive his parents and then spends the rest of the day enjoying himself in Chicago along with his best friend Cameron and his girlfriend Sloane.
The fun starts when Ferris persuades Cameron to borrow his father’s car in order to get around the city. Â This might not seem such a bad idea, except that the car in question is a restored 1961 Ferrari, not exactly the most inconspicuous car to be driving around in when you’re playing hookie!
Of course things are never simple and Ferris and his friends have to keep one step ahead of various people who are trying to catch him out, in particular Mr. Rooney, a teacher from his school who suspects Ferris of sciving off and heads over to his house to try to find him. Â Luckily for Ferris, his sister Jeannie returns home and scares Mr. Rooney off, thinking he is a burglar. Â Unfortunately for Ferris, Jeannie is also out to find him as she is annoyed (and perhaps a bit jealous?) that he can bunk off so easily.
To add further to his problems, when the trio return Cameron’s father’s car they discover hundreds of miles have been added to the clock, thanks to the attendants at the valet parking taking it for a joy ride. Â A plan his hatched to fix the problem, which involves jacking up the car and running it in reverse. Â Obviously this just makes matters worse, but that is the least of Cameron’s worries, as the car gets knocked off the jacks and hurtles backwards through a plate glass window and into a ravine at the back of the house.
Cameron decides to take the blame for the car, despite Ferris offering to do so, but time is marching on and Ferris realises he had better get back home before his parents get back, so he takes a “short cut” through everybody else’s back gardens!
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is a classic teen movie, one that I’m sure everyone has probably seen at some point or another, and while it may have been fun to imagine living like Ferris when you were a teenager, it’s probably even more fun to think about acting in such an irresponsible manner now that you’re all grown up!
The movie had an interesting soundtrack, with a wide mix of different musical styles represented. Â John Hughes realised this and prevented an official soundtrack album from being produced, as he felt the changes in style would not work together well played one after another.
Hughes obviously cared for his work deeply, and another example was when he tried to fight the production of a Ferris Bueller TV series. Â He lost that particular battle, and the show went out starring Charlie Schlatter as Ferris and a Miss Jennifer Aniston as Jeannie! Â Seems John was right though, as the show was cancelled half way through its first season due to poor ratings!