Sunday, 5 July 2009

Retro Review: Some Kind of Wonderful

With his love of art, a part time job in a gas station and a tomgirl for a best friend, Keith Nelson played by Eric Stoltz is the school social outcast. In a teen culture where looks and money are considered high importance, Keith's working class roots do not cut it at his clique high school. So he spends his time with his best mate Watts played by Mary Stuart Masterson, a sassy lass whose activities include playing drums and spouting feminist rhetoric. However, Keith and Watts are broken out of their solitary existence when he falls for Amanda Jones played by Lea Thompson. Amanda is a gorgeous IT girl who rolls with the popular crowd and is also dating one of the richest guys at school. When Amanda breaks up with her boyfriend Keith takes this chance to ask her out on a date. Unknown to Keith, Watts is secretly in love with him but nevertheless helps him with his plan to woo Amanda.

Some Kind of Wonderful is produced by the legendary John Hughes who brought us The Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Pretty In Pink and Sixteen Candles so I had very high expectations before watching it. I can safely say I was not disappointed and Some Kind of Wonderful was a great film to watch. The storyline is not the most original but the script and dialogue makes up for it. Eric Stoltz, Mary Stuart Masterson and Lea Thompson put in fantastic performances and really gel in this movie. I admit that Mary Stuart Masterson's character, Watts does steal the limelight with all her wise cracks and sarcastic comments but Lea Thompson brings a lot of warmth to a character that you are just yearning to hate. Amanda may be popular and beautiful but her embarrassment of her working class roots demonstrates that things that look perfect on the outside are not always so. Eric Stoltz is great as the guy who does not fit in, this is a little unconvincing in the looks department but he plays the part very well.

This film is a gender revised version of Pretty in Pink which was made a year earlier but with the ending that John Hughes - along with many others - wanted. You see the suits at the films studio pressurised John Hughes into changing the ending of Pretty in Pink so Molly Ringwald's character would end up with McCarthy when he really wanted Ringwald to end up with Cryer's character. So apparently John Hughes wrote this film in response with the ending he really wanted. He did a really good job as I much prefer this version which is uplifting and really celebrates teenage years while Pretty in Pink was somewhat depressing. This film was well received by the critics but did not do that great at the box offices.

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3 cool comments:

Anonymous said...

One of the best teen movies or even "Brat Pack" movies , if you consider it to be one. I love the ending when Watts gets the earring she picked out for Amanda.

Anonymous said...

I haven't seen it, but on the strength of this, I might.

Pretty in Pink had its moments, but anyone who'd dump their best friend to go off with a Soc/Jock/whatever he was, is somewhat shallow. I always liked to think that five minutes later the best friend was snapped-up by someone lovely who'd admired them from afar for ages!

Ondo Lady said...

Adrienne S: I agree, this film was fantastic but sadly under rated.

Migratingfishswim: Yes I did not like the ending of Pretty in Pink, she should have stayed with Duckie.