Jake’s movie clip of the day: http://youtu.be/AgbFDvvVr0w
Jake’s song of the day: http://youtu.be/Y2wkR-jBpuo
Ahh, the 80s. It’s a decade I truly wish I was a part of. Boom boxes, parachute pants, big earrings, crazy hair, classic rock, the Walkman, cassette tapes, and classic movies that I will remember for a lifetime, were all a part of this era in time. If someone were to ask me what decade I would visit, my answer would easily be… the 80s. In my previous movie review, I mentioned that I chose to review the movie Super over an 80s classic. Because I’ve seen this movie so much, I decided to do the Super movie review, first. SO! Here goes it.
The 80s consisted of many great trends, including awesome music, video games, and especially movies. Many of these movies were comedic, starring iconic and goofy teenagers of the time. Movies like The Goonies, Breakfast Club, Weird Science, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, all play a huge part of the classic “80s movie franchise.” One movie in particular, however, I feel was left in the dust once it had its theatrical release. Like every other teenager movie, Better Off Dead happened to be one of them. This movie was directed by none other than Steve Holland, a famous Nickelodeon director, in the year 1985. Better Off Dead was Holland’s first directed movie and when it released in 1985, the movie really bit the dust compared to its main competitors. So many classic movies were being released in 1985 (Like Ferris Bueller, Back to the Future, and even St. Elmo’s Fire), so it’s no surprise that Better Off Dead was one of the movies left below the popularity line.
Compared with Back to the Future, Holland’s first movie only raised over five-thousand dollars over its opening weekend… nationwide. As for Back to the Future, that damn good movie made over eleven-million on its opening weekend. The total gross for Better Off Dead was only over ten-million! DAMN! The movie isn’t awful at all, it’s just as awesome as every other 80s movie. And I’m a about to prove why this is so.
The movie stars actor John Cusack (Say Anything, Sixteen Candles), one of my most favorite actors of all time, as a typical teenager who is seriously obsessed with his girlfriend, Beth (Amanda Wyss, A Nightmare on Elm Street). We first see Lane Meyer’s room (Cusack) in the opening credits, which is completely covered with pictures of his girlfriend. This is a major exaggeration of typical relationship obsession. However, correct me if I’m wrong. As the movie progresses, Lane attempts to try out for the high school ski team, but fails. Not only that happens, but Lane’s girlfriend Beth breaks up with him for an athletic jerk-head, by the name of Roy Stalin (Aaron Dozier, Revenge of the Nerds). Roy, being the captain of the ski team, is a complete tool, with long blonde hair, and a most cocky attitude. He’s a prime demonstration of a high school jock and every time you see him, you just want to punch him in the face.
Alone and depressed, Lane goes through a suicidal phase, which makes the movie seem a little dark. After his emotional break-up, we get to know Lane’s family. His mother is happy-go-lucky, a little psycho, and a horrible cook. There’s a scene in the movie where she boils bacon. Gross! Lane’s dad is strict and is seen as a parent who is trying to catch up with the current generation. Lane’s little brother is a boy-genius who can build a laser rifle, as well as a rocket ship.
Throughout the movie’s entirety, other than the fact that Lane constantly tries to win his girlfriend back, he also experiences some other wild events. Events like being constantly chased by a paper boy, attempting to ski a dangerous hill, working at a fast-food restaurant, repairing a broken-down Camaro, meeting a pretty foreign exchange student, dealing with his drug-influenced friend, and realizing that his best fortune was lying in front of him all along.
Better Off Dead is a great movie classic that was over-shadowed by its other movie competitors. In all honesty, I believe this movie is much better than most 80s movies. It’s so surprising that it didn’t get the recognition it deserved, with all of its comedic references, hilarious acting, and good storyline. This movie happens to be one of my favorite movies, but I am not going to rate it based on my biased thoughts. If you ever get the chance to watch this movie, I would highly recommend in doing so. In conclusion, this movie deserves four popcorn kernels out of five.