The concept was intriguing: a night of fiction based on the characters from John Hughes films, all grown up. Claire Standish from The Breakfast Club was a divorced mother who’d had an abortion back in high school after getting pregnant with John Bender’s baby. Kevin from Home Alone was a loser who frequented his local bar to re-tell the tale of how he was once left by his parents during Christmas. The ideas themselves were sort of amusing, and some of the stories themselves were delivered well.
But the overall feeling I had while listening was something that can best be described by the word: Ugh.
Maybe it’s that I don’t want to think about how depressing being 45 is compared to being a high schooler with your entire life waiting for you. Maybe it’s that the comedic timing of some of the performers was just off. Or maybe it’s that I used a quote from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and talked about walking around in a towel in my high school valedictorian speech and didn’t appreciate being reminded of how naive I was back then (and sort of still am, in some ways).
Whatever the reason, I didn’t find joy in poking fun at the stereotypical high school experiences portrayed in those films. After all, we don’t watch movies to witness an accurate representation of our lives. We watch them to escape real life, and if we happen to learn truths about reality while losing ourselves in fiction, all the better. But at the end of the day, if I wanted to see a movie about the hard life lessons we all eventually learn with absolutely no romanticizing–well, could you stop me, please? That doesn’t sound fun at all.