All Happy Families are Alike: Recommended Watching

febrero 2, 2023


Hi there again! 

This is the first installment of the Recommended Watching series on the present blog (basically expanding on whatever topic we may be dealing with through different sociocultural contents, movies/series in this case), and today we’re presenting not one nor two, but three films related to unit “All Happy Families are Alike“, and in turn, to the topic “Education/Life Stages

The first one is a pretty obvious choice, just if you- like me- were a child in the 80s. John Hughes’ The Breakfast Club‘s plot revolves around the one-day detention five High School students are given and how five very different individuals (a beauty contest princess, a rebellious thug, an athlete, a brainy nerd, and a strange outcast) end up, against all odds, becoming inseparable friends at the end of that day. Beautifully shot and really well acted along with its unforgettable soundtrack, “The Breakfast Club” is a movie without great artistic aspirations, but which can be easily enjoyed by most. And that’s what matters at the end of the day, innit?

The second flick, 1998 Rushmore, is way more pretentious than the former one, but a pretty great film nonetheless. Director Wes Anderson’s quirky and über-Indie style usually does very little for me. Some of his most acclaimed movies (Moonrise Kingdom, Grand Budapest Hotel…) are just as hipster as growing a thick beard, wearing horn-rimmed glasses, and walking into a Starbucks coffee bar to attend some stupid talk on banal stuff with the place full of snobbish dullards. Well, THAT is not my kind of thing, to be honest. But I kind of enjoyed two of his films: The Royal Tenenbaums and this very movie. So, just give it a go, you may enjoy it even more than I did!

I’m closing today’s post with one of, in my humble opinion, the greatest films of the ’90s: Todd Solonz‘s Welcome to the Dollhouse. Solonz became a household name with his next film, 1998’s super-disturbing Happiness, but that one can be just too much for most, too impenetrable, maybe.

Here, the brutality of the facts (basically how the different, the ugly, and the quirky are treated with extreme callousness during adolescence) is counterbalanced with a humorous tone, which means that even though you feel sorry for the main character (poor, constantly misunderstood Dawn Wiener), you will find yourself laughing at many times or simply enjoying the film.

One quote which I guess summarizes the whole movie story:”High school is better than Junior High. They’ll call you names, but not as much