Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Lost Gems of the 80s, Part 3

Here it is, the last part of this fun list. Enjoy, and please don't be shy about telling me what you think of my choices.

Teen Witch (1989)
Biking shorts with short skirts, “cool” white kids and their attempt at rap, and of course, a choreographed dance scene at the prom. Can you ask for more in a movie? Well, yes, but Teen Witch is the absolute pinnacle of cheesy goodness.

Louise (Robin Lively) is not popular, but like any teenage girl, she wants to be. On her sixteenth birthday, she discovers that she comes from a long line of witches, and she’s introduced to her powers by Madame Serena (the always recognizable Zelda Rubenstein). As soon as Louise has the power of witchcraft, she makes herself popular, finds a new love, and, of course, gets a host of new problems.

A happy ending is inevitable, as are most of the plot points in the movie, but when you really want to lose your head and watch a senseless bit of bubble gum cinema, rent Teen Witch and learn the words to “Top That!”

She's Out of Control (1989)
Unlike the other teen movies on this list, She’s Out of Control is more about the dad than the kid, but don’t think this movie skimps on silly teenage drama. The movie comes complete with slapstick humor, awkward dates, and even a prom in the final act.

Single dad Doug Simpson (Tony Danza) is a radio station producer with two daughters. When Katie (Ami Dolenz), his oldest, turns 15, she thinks it’s time to look older. Dad doesn’t want to lose his little girl, but when he goes out of town on a business meeting, he comes back to find that his fiancĂ©e (Catherine Hicks) has helped Katie go from wallflower to a total knockout. (Of course, this isn't very hard, seeing as how every girl in 1980s comedies was gorgeous underneath her ponytail and glasses.) Boys from every walk of life are banging down his door, and Doug doesn’t know whether to lock Katie in her room or make every new boyfriend his best friend.

Even though it could be mistaken for an ABC Family Original, She’s Out of Control is still delightful. Plus, Matthew Perry plays a preppy sleezeball with his perfect awkward charm, and Todd Bridges and Dustin Diamond make quick cameos.

and in the Honorable Mention category... Hiding Out (1987)
This is an honorable mention because it’s not technically a teen comedy like the rest. Instead of actually playing a high-schooler, Jon Cryer (the loveable Duckie from Pretty in Pink) plays a guy in his twenties who must go into hiding as a high school student.

After the mob tries to kill him, successful stockbroker Andrew Morenski (Cryer) flees to hide out at with his aunt (played by Cryer's real life mom). While waiting to speak with her at the local high school, Andrew decides enrolling himself as a student is the perfect way to hide. With help from his cousin (Keith Coogan), Andrew keeps a pretty low profile as Maxwell Hauser. Like Drew Barrymore character in Never Been Kissed so many years after him, Max doesn't fit in so well as the typical high school student, and he shakes up the high school’s status quo. He falls for the pretty girl Ryan (Annabeth Gish) and decides to run for class president. But of course, everything can't stay simple. By a small accident, the mob tracks him down, and just as he's starting to make big waves in his high school life, big men with guns are standing in his way.

Mobsters and shootouts are more prevalent than jocks and choreographed dance routines, and it’s definitely less cheesy than the rest of the list. But if you’re looking for a mob movie that’s certainly on the lighter side, Hiding Out is worth your time.

1 comment:

k8 said...

What??? No shout out to Wallace Shawn in She's Out of Control? I'm SHOCKED!!! He *is* Vizzini, after all! :)

Actually that's the only one in this part that I've seen, but it always brings a smile to my face! :)