The Perfect Ending- Sweet Sixteen Forever- John Hughes
As an avid John Hughes' films fan, you would think it would be hard to choose just one favorite sceen, but it is not. My all-time favorite scene is the sweet sixteen kiss at the end of "Sixteen Candles." My oldest daughter would disagree. Every boyfriend she has ever had was measured by a sliding scale of the dedication and devotion of the Duck man in "Pretty in Pink." She played the scene where Duckie Dale (Jon Cryer) dances to the song "Try a Little Tenderness" by Otis Redding- over and over again- until she wore out our VHS tape.
"The Breakfast Club" about teens stuck at school during a Saturday detention, is another favorite. As many John Hughes' films do, "The Breakfast Club" will teach you an important life lesson- never stereo-type others. Brian Johnson's (Anthony Michael Hall) answer to the question of who do you think you are- says it all, "You see us as you want to see us...in the simplest terms...you see us as a brain, an athlete, a basket case, a princess, and a criminal." My favorite scene is when the teens are running through the halls-trying to get back to the library before they get caught- and they slide around a corner to find the principal drinking at a water fountain. Al though, the scene where the lunchmeat is thrown in the air and sticks to the top of a statue for a few brief moments- would be a close second. Rebellious!
"Some Kind of Wonderful" is one that you have not seen unless John Hughes is your hero, and adolescent angst is your favorite genre- but it is still one of the best. Who would not sympathize with a girl who loves a boy so much that she is willing to help him romance another girl- the girl of his dreams? My favorite is suprisingly not the triumphant final scene, when Watts (Mary Stuart Masterson) gets the diamond earrings, but the beginning scenes of just her hands and feet playing the drums- setting the rhythm for the entire film. Phenomenal.
You have seen "Mr. Mom," "National Lampoon's Vacation," "Uncle Buck," "Home Alone," or "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" and you laughed throughout- but you may not have seen, "She's Having a Baby." For every woman who would like to understand how a man thinks, I recommend it. Because of the hospital scene when a drop of blood hits the floor, as Kristy Briggs (Elizabeth Govern) is wielded to the emergency room for a C-section, I always cry when I hear Kate Bush's song, "This Woman's Work." Her lyrics, "oh it's hard on the man, now his part is over..." echoes Jake's (Kevin Bacon) woe as he finds himself growing into a marriage, a mortgage, and backed into fatherhood -his head hangs low, helpless in the waiting room. Brilliant.
Why is the final scene of "Sixteen Candles" my favorite? Samantha Baker (Molly Ringwald) is a real trooper when her family (so wrapped up in her sister's wedding) forgets her sixteenth birthday, she is forced to take a strange foreign exchange student to her high school dance, and she is hit on by a geek (Anthony Michael Hall.) No one will ever forget Gedde Watanabe, as Long Duk Dong, the foreign exchange student. By the end of the movie, everyone- including the geek Sam gave her panties to- wants to see Sam get Jake (Michael Schoeffling). In the final scene, Sam and Jake are sitting on a glass table. Sam is still wearing her bridesmaid's dress, as they lean toward each other over sixteen glowing candles on a belated birthday cake. You remember what Sam's father said, "When it happens to you, Sam, it will be the real thing," as their lips meet- then the credits begin to roll- while a beautiful song plays- the perfect ending- suspended in time- forever. It get's me everytime. Genius! Timeless.
You truly understand and have mastered the essence of the human condition. We are eternally grateful and will miss you, John Hughes.