Everybody Wants Some!! (2016)


Everybody Wants Some!! PosterDirector: Richard Linklater

Release Date: March 30th, 2016 (US limited); May 13th, 2016 (UK)

Genre: Comedy

Starring: Blake Jenner, Glenn Powell, Ryan Guzman, Quinton Johnson, Zoey Deutch

At times Richard Linklater’s latest hit resembles the idyllic college lifestyle you could never imagine. It’s almost too good to be true and yet it is true, to some extent. Everybody Wants Some!! is Linklater’s own recollection of student life in the 1980s, adapted for silver screen consumption and executed with golden-crisp flair and a penchant for non-sappy nostalgia. It brilliantly sweeps you along for the ride, your own student experience rendered almost irrelevant. At least it did for me. I’m not American, I didn’t live in college accommodation, I was never a jock, and yet Linklater’s outing had me laughing at and with those on-screen as if their antics were once my own.

The director has referred to his film as a sort of spiritual sequel to Boyhood given it opens with a young man about to embark upon college (spoiler: in other words, precisely where Boyhood ends). But I don’t think it is that. Whereas Boyhood exhausted storytelling possibilities by effectively emphasising the importance of the journey, often times with a sombre edge, Everybody Wants Some!! shows much more concern for the moment, for the high points and the hilarity of pre-adulthood. This is less about being unlucky in love or life and more about those unforgettably positive, mad experiences of youth. Dazed and Confused would be the more fitting, more obvious sibling.

For one, that film’s feeling of yesteryear is out in force again here, ushered in by retro yellow opening credits. Blake Jenner appears as they fade on and off-screen; he is Jake and he turns up at his new college residence sporting a crate of album vinyls under one arm and a noticeably smaller bag of baseball gear under the other. Upon entering the abode Jake encounters his new housemates: some instigating social order, some filling mattresses with water, some playing mini golf, and one lone cowboy. Student characters can be insufferable — particularly those painted with overly macho, jockish strokes — but under the tutelage of Richard Linklater that isn’t something we ought to worry about.

Sure, these guys seem douchey at first, and sure, they retain a degree of that douchiness throughout the piece, but they’re also oddly charming and bursting with infectious energy. Linklater calms any initial anxieties by having the group glide through the campus neighbourhood in their Cadillac, windows down, heads bobbing, voices loudly embracing the lyrics of The Sugarhill Gang’s “Rapper’s Delight” (the first of many era-aggrandising songs). Their intention is to woo girls; indeed, along with sports chatter, wooing girls is the guys’ primary intention throughout the movie. And suitably — crucially — they fail more often than they succeed.

See, the inspired thing about Everybody Wants Some!! is that it encourages you to engage with the lifestyle and the competitiveness and the nonsense as it simultaneously undercuts the jock stereotype: the characters are idiots just like the rest of us, and equally as crass. But they are also willing to integrate — they party with country music folk, punk rockers, and the theatre club — even if their endgame is ultimately sex and booze. But that doesn’t matter because sex and booze and having a good time is everyone’s endgame. Everyone is complicit, there is a communal acceptance of wild social norms (norms derived from the director’s lived experience).

That singular vision notwithstanding, and despite the group’s manipulation of internal hierarchy, Jake and company are purposefully geared more towards the endearing end of the moral spectrum, as opposed to the end that breeds malice. The newcomers are peasants and the seniors kings, that’s just how it is, and yet the entire team appear to get along royally, the invasive presence of pecking order only rearing in moments of silly buffoonery. Did you know you cannot sit upright when lying down with someone pressing their finger into your chest?

What’s more crucial is this clash of temperaments moulding together to create a cohesive unit strengthened by a baseball-shaped bond. The characters are individually distinctive and too many to recall, but here are a few bright sparks: Finnegan, Jake’s mentor of sorts, played superbly by Glen Powell who is both welcoming in nature and obtuse in personality; Dale, the coolest of the group, portrayed with starry suave by Quinton Johnson; and the cowboy, Will Brittain’s Beuter, whose “alright” might as well be a throwback to Matthew McConaughey. Then there is Willoughby (Wyatt Russell) who owns “almost every single episode” of The Twilight Zone, a real spaced-out dude, and Jay Niles (Juston Street), essentially Saved by the Bell’s Screech drunk on egomania.

Their collective chemistry is anchored by Jenner as Jake, he the most approachable of a surprisingly approachable bunch. We witness this affability via Jake’s budding romance with arts student Beverly (Zoey Deutch). Their relationship is sweet, matching the fun-loving tone of the film, and manages to maintain a significant level of intrigue despite being wrought with a predictable throughline. In other words, it’s a testament to both performers. Deutch is especially good given her fairly slight on-screen opportunities, Beverly’s confident demeanour that of someone afforded more time to explore their intricacies (a phone conversation that she steers sizzles with assured aplomb).

The suburban location, the frat-esque bunker, the amusingly dated costume design — these all conjugate together to recreate a nostalgic familiarity for some and to authentically establish the not-so-familiar for others. Moustaches are trimmed and not-quite, t-shirts are tight, trousers tighter. There is a terrific shot framed with playful perfection by cinematographer Shane F. Kelly that depicts a perplexed Jake in the foreground and his teasing housemate Nesbit’s (Austin Amelio) mirrored reflection in the background. Yet the film also bears some hallmarks of today, such as the presence of “Reagan” and “Carter” student stalls on campus, the activist culture fully mobilised.

Linklater, as he has done so often in the past, recreates a culture and camaraderie that many will recognise with such glee and admiration, and all the while he partially subverts that culture, thrusting forth human beings with quirks and hopes rather than muscle-bound, bellowing jock caricatures. This could have easily surrendered to hokey story points and annoying character traits. For a film so potentially difficult to get right Everybody Wants Some!! is so, so easy to watch. A disclaimer: when you do watch, and you should, prepare for the ensuing grin-induced jaw pain (it’ll be worth it).

Everybody Wants Some!! - Zoey Deutch & Blake Jenner

Images credit: IMP Awards, Collider

Images copyright (©): Paramount Pictures

Oscars 2015 — Final Predictions

Oscars 2015

Don’t we all just love the Oscars? It’s an evening of maniacal celebration, of gratuitous back-patting, of cringe-worthy speech-making and of hosts trying to grasp the latest social trend – I’m looking at you, selfie Ellen. The folks over in Hollywood might “really like” Sally Field, but they’re not quite as fond of Selma or Nightcrawler, and goodness knows how fond they are of American Sniper (hopefully not as much as many fear).

All joking aside, Academy Awards night is a big one for the film industry. The movies nominated are, for the most part, pretty damn good too and should be heralded on a grand stage. Tonight’s ceremony is looking fairly clear-cut in most categories, but there are still a few ambiguities to be sorted.

Better get on with some predictions then. Click on the appropriate film titles for reviews.

Best Picture

American Sniper



The Grand Budapest Hotel

The Imitation Game


The Theory of Everything


– Will win: Boyhood

– Should win: Boyhood

– Should’ve been nominated: Interstellar

Oscars 2015 - Boyhood

Best Director

Alejandro G. Iñárritu (Birdman)

Bennett Miller (Foxcatcher)

Morten Tyldum (The Imitation Game)

Richard Linklater (Boyhood)

Wes Anderson (The Grand Budapest Hotel)

– Will win: Alejandro G. Iñárritu

– Should win: Richard Linklater

– Should’ve been nominated: Christopher Nolan (Interstellar), Jeremy Saulnier (Blue Ruin)

Oscars 2015 - Inarritu

Best Actor

Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game)

Bradley Cooper (American Sniper)

Eddie Redmayne (The Theory of Everything)

Michael Keaton (Birdman)

Steve Carell (Foxcatcher)

– Will win: Michael Keaton

– Should win: Eddie Redmayne

– Should’ve been nominated: David Oyelowo (Selma), Jake Gyllenhaal (Nightcrawler)

Oscars 2015 - Keaton

Best Actress

Felicity Jones (The Theory of Everything)

Julianne Moore (Still Alice)

Marion Cotillard (Two Days, One Night)

Reese Witherspoon (Wild)

Rosumand Pike (Gone Girl)

– Will win: Julianne Moore

– Should win: Rosamund Pike

– Should’ve been nominated: Emily Blunt (Edge of Tomorrow)

Oscars 2015 - Moore

Best Supporting Actor

Edward Norton (Birdman)

Ethan Hawke (Boyhood)

J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)

Mark Ruffalo (Foxcatcher)

Robert Duvall (The Judge)

– Will win: J.K. Simmons

– Should win: J.K. Simmons

– Should’ve been nominated: Channing Tatum (Foxcatcher), Andy Serkis (DotPotA)

Oscars 2015 - Simmons

Best Supporting Actress

Emma Stone (Birdman)

Keira Knightley (The Imitation Game)

Laura Dern (Wild)

Meryl Streep (Into the Woods)

Patricia Arquette (Boyhood)

– Will win: Patricia Arquette

– Should win: Patricia Arquette

– Should’ve been nominated: Carrie Coon (Gone Girl)

Oscars 2015 - Arquette

Best Adapted Screenplay

American Sniper

The Imitation Game

Inherent Vice

The Theory of Everything


– Will win: The Imitation Game

– Should win: Whiplash

– Should’ve been nominated: Gone Girl

Oscars 2015 - TIG

Best Original Screenplay




The Grand Budapest Hotel


– Will win: Birdman

– Should win: Boyhood

– Should’ve been nominated: Guardians of the Galaxy

Oscars 2015 - Birdman

Final Thoughts

It looks as though the only real tussle – and it’s a big one – will be between Boyhood and Birdman for Best Picture. They’ll probably split the top award and Best Director between them, though Boyhood and Linklater deserve both.

Michael Keaton might yet nab Best Actor from Eddie Redmayne and despite the bookies favouring the Brit after his BAFTA triumph, I fancy the American to win in the US (cynical me).

As far as the other three acting categories go, Julianne Moore, J.K. Simmons and Patricia Arquette are all shoe-ins. The latter two fully deserve to win. Still Alice still hasn’t hit cinemas over here in the UK therefore I have yet to see Moore’s performance, but I just can’t look past Rosamund Pike’s stunning turn in Gone Girl. Pike should win. She won’t.

The biggest snubs of the year are probably Interstellar and Nightcrawler. David Oyelowo absolutely should be contention for Best Actor (he should probably win it, in truth) but at least Selma has top table nomination. With ten possible slots in the Best Picture category, the dismissal of Interstellar and Nightcrawler is unjustified.

Carrie Coon should feel aggrieved to be missing out on a Best Supporting Actress nomination, as should Channing Tatum in the Best Supporting Actor – or even Best Actor – category. It has been a strong year for the actors to be fair. And a word too for Blue Ruin, one of 2014’s less well-known masterstrokes.

If you’re watching, enjoy the show!

Oscars 2015 Best Picture

Images credit: ColliderHollywood Reporter, Indiewire

Boyhood (2014)


Boyhood PosterDirector: Richard Linklater

Release Date: July 11th, 2014 (UK); August 15th, 2014 (US)

Genre: Drama

Starring: Ellar Coltrane, Lorelei Linklater, Ethan Hawke, Patricia Arquette

For many, Boyhood is the latest film to define a generation. They’re right, but it doesn’t hold fort at just one generation. The beauty in Richard Linklater’s 12-year undertaking is its accessibility, its exclusivity. This is a film that will surely speak to many different people from many different age groups. It could have easily been named Girlhood, or Fatherhood, or Motherhood because it is all of those things. As an early-90s kid myself, Linklater’s piece plays like the ultimate reflection of growing up, and clocking in at 165 minutes it feels like one of cinema’s finest works.

It’s 2002 and six-year-old Mason Jnr (Ellar Coltrane) is living with his older sister Samantha (Lorelei Linklater) and their mother Olivia (Patricia Arquette). While the siblings annoy each other with Britney Spears renditions and blame games, mum is actively striving to open up new avenues and offer them a better life. We watch the family move (a frequent occurrence) across Texas to accommodate Olivia’s studies, at which point dad Mason Snr (Ethan Hawke) reappears.

This manoeuvring of people and place is what drives Boyhood. Every character is jockeying for something and even though the piece spans 12 years and a variety of locations, that something often remains constant. From the moment we meet little Mason staring ponderously at the sky, it is apparent that we’re in the presence of a youngster not entirely resolved on which path he wants to take in life. He’s just a child at this point but Mason’s lack of enlightenment soon evolves into indecision as relates to the future; photography does take prominence, but it is tough to tell if his heart is truly in picture-taking. As the years roll on, Coltrane carries Mason’s ambiguity with increasing fervour. It’s just enough to generate intrigue and mirror reality — a darkroom chat in school highlights that angsty unmoved-yet-not-entirely-disengaged trait common in teenagers — but not so much as to push us or those around him away.

His sister Samantha is different. Despite the camera’s fondness for Mason Jnr, Samantha gets ample screen time to evolve and as a result her desire for independence gains more clarity. She is the older of the two and therefore tends to champion a greater degree of worldly awareness over her brother; one of the most cringeworthy scenes is also one of the most endearing, where Mason Snr communicates strategies to avoid teenage pregnancy. Lorelei Linklater sells the awkwardness brilliantly, though in truth her chat with Ethan Hawke was probably just as embarrassing in real life.

Hawke is stellar as dad Mason Snr, embodying the character whose behaviour differs most between the opening and closing frames. That’s not to say he becomes the antithesis of his younger self, but rather a more seasoned version with the same emotional clout. One of Linklater’s greatest triumphs in making Boyhood is affording his characters a robust sense of identity across the 12 years. Above anything else, Mason Snr simply wishes to be a good father and it is such a joy watching him thrive in the role. He is never a bad father per se but the underlying guilt harpooned to him as a result of his separation from Olivia is palpable, so much so that he makes humorous yet immature jokes in front of his children to dodge the subject (“Your mother is a piece of work, I think you know that by now”).

Olivia, on the other hand, is wound up fairly tightly, she fulfilling most of the parenting duties whilst her ex-husband works away in Alaska, frozen from reality. Unlike with the others, we need to wait until Olivia’s final words to really grasp hold of what she has been pursuing over the years. Patricia Arquette delivers those last few lines with the utmost sincerity and pain, and at that point we realise her character’s embedded desire has always been for something more. Having lived a life for her children, it becomes clear to Olivia that she wants to live for herself, at least just a little. It is the most heartbreaking point in a film roused by heartfelt moments, one that poignantly captures parenthood for the uninitiated such as myself.

Each of the aforementioned characteristics and motivations are universal, the kind that we can all relate to either personally or in passing. Appropriately, in a film about relationships it is the interactions between individuals that really inject spark and vitality. Linklater always means to coax emotion from the scenes he creates, be it in the form of infectious laughter, genuine solemnity or, as is often the case, foolproof charm. We get as much out of Olivia’s longing for normality as she watches her children drive away for the weekend as we do from a car-set conversation where the siblings reverse their father’s parental diatribe back onto him. The chemistry between all four main actors is indelible.

One thing that Boyhood ain’t is heavy. The filmmakers’ efforts — greatly aided by Sandra Adair’s fluent editing — encourage a true sense of lightness. When we’re not chuckling at the absurdity of now outdated pop culture trends (I’ll take Harry Potter over Soulja Boy any day of the week), wit comes in the form of almost caper-ish humour; the sneaky removal of a pro-McCain signpost wouldn’t look out of place in a Coen brothers comedy, nor would the appearance of a staunch Republican neighbour just seconds before: “Do I look like a Barack Hussein Obama supporter?”

I watched Boyhood at home on Blu-ray. After the credits finished rolling, the disc reverted back to its main menu where the option to view a special feature was supplemented by a montage of Mason growing up, Family of the Year’s song “Hero” playing in tandem. It was like watching the film all over again, tear-jerking and life-affirming. Boyhood is bigger than any perceived gimmick. It’s a film for all the family about all the family. It’s proper cinema.

Boyhood - Ethan Hawke Ellar Coltrane & Lorelei Linklater

Images credit: IMP Awards, Collider

Images copyright (©): ICF Films

Annie Hall (1977)


Annie Hall PosterDirector: Woody Allen

Release Date: April 20th, 1977 (US)

Genre: Comedy; Drama; Romance

Starring: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton

Films are often categorised under the “escape” section of our everyday lives. We watch to disassociate with reality for short bursts of time, to be present only within the context of the tedious romcom playing out on screen. Or the spectacular science-fiction trek that hurtles us towards another planet. Or the not-so-scary slasher flick we’ve seen a hundred times yet whose economical frights we still get a kick out of. Every so often though, there’s a film that commands our attention and refrains from releasing its grasp even long after the credits have finished rolling. Woody Allen’s infectious romantic dramedy is that film. Presented in a simple-yet-effective manner, it’s the delivery of the piece that approaches astounding. Annie Hall truly is a hallmark of American cinema.

Alvy Singer (Woody Allen) is an ardent New Yorker with a panache for eccentricity and a motor mouth to back it up. He’s also a comedian who plays doubles tennis every so often, and it’s on one of these sporting jaunts that Alvy meets Annie Hall (Diane Keaton). The connection between the pair is palpable from the moment they first awkwardly converse.

This isn’t a complicated film. Sure, it gets caught up in a barrage of intellectually stimulated dialogues echoed by apparently complex characters but that’s wholeheartedly where the fun lies. And it really is fun. Alvy is an erratic guy who just about holds it together by way of his methodological consistency. He wants to know the who, what, where, when, and why about everything because this allows him to pick apart and challenge. (“Everything our parents said was good is bad: sun, milk, red meat, college.”) Maybe it’s the comedian in him, but one gets the sense that his mannerisms have been ingrained since childhood — Alvy alludes to the adolescent trauma enforced by the roller coaster that often rattled above his house.

On the other hand there’s Annie. Not quite carefree but certainly free-spirited, Annie is bubbly and bumbling. The chipper lass ain’t entirely sure of herself when we first meet, though she steadily gains resolve and direction alongside the spitfire that is Alvy. They’re quite different people and share a relationship that invariably teeters between effusive and choppy. She’s Los Angeles, he’s New York. Certainly, their premier interaction post-tennis match embodies the joyous authenticity of the couple. The scene is awkward and endearing and hilarious, and from then we can’t take our eyes off of pair’s dynamic nor remove our permanent smile induced as a result of their witty banter. The film is all about them, fortunately. In some ways we feel unduly cut short at 93 minutes, but in others the hour and a half feels like a perfect summation of director Woody Allen’s vision. For a film so focused on two people — it does flirt with a variety of issues, but hones in on their relationship — Alvy and Annie are perpetually watchable.

Aided by semi-prominent collaborator Marshall Brickman, Allen’s original screenplay ensures his characters’ long-term watchability is a certainty. It’s outstanding. The film is bookended by two Woody Allen (or Alvy, but we get the sense they’re the same person) monologues, both of which represent the writer — and actor and director — at his most prosperous. Endlessly quotable (“Joey Nichols. See? Nichols. See? Nichols!”) and unafraid to tackle a whole range of affairs from 70s New York culture to drug use to the US East/West divide, Allen and Brickman’s screenplay rightly bagged an Academy Award at the organisation’s semicentennial ceremony. The narrative never suffocates its characters; even on the odd occasion when an overly vague cultural reference escapes Allen’s cerebral pen, the film skips along unscathed, our viewing experience likewise resilient.

This might also be one of the filmmaker’s funniest outings. With light-hearted subtlety often capitalised on by Allen and his acting partner Diane Keaton, Annie Hall never stops short at provoking laughter. Whether it’s a character living up to expectations — in the case of psychiatric results, it’s two characters — or a swivel away from narrative convention, humour is always lying in wait and we’re eternally willing to guzzle. The latter of these two examples sees Alvy accuse a pompous cinemagoer of being too indulgent. Allen, in this instance himself a quasi-critic evaluating the pretentious kind, is also poking fun at himself and the plethora of ‘don’t sneeze or you’ll miss the point’ diatribes he has written into the film.

As previously alluded to, the piece is shot abiding by a mantra of simplicity that serves to position the spotlight on its characters and accentuate their presence. The camera lingers on conversations for a long period of time because it knows it’s peering into aural gold. Richard Linklater’s Before trilogy springs to mind, a romantic moment in time that shares many intricacies with Annie Hall and was undoubtedly influence by Allen’s effective candour. Periodically we do see a few neat tricks play out, such as Alvy and company breaking the third wall or random subtitles translating small-talk for real thoughts, but these aren’t just pithy inclusions. Rather, they serve a purpose, be that to inject amusement or make a specific point about life.

The performances from Diane Keaton and Woody Allen ought to speak for themselves, but it’s worth noting that they’re wonderful. Annie Hall plays out in a non-chronological fashion. We already know the ending because it’s also the beginning, but that doesn’t matter one jot. It’s the journey that counts, and this journey is one of the very best.

Annie Hall - Woody and Diane

Images credit: IMP Awards, Total Film

Images copyright (©): United Artists

Sixteen Candles (1984)


Director: John Hughes

Release Date: May 4th, 1984 (US)

Genre: Comedy; Romance

Starring: Molly Ringwald, Anthony Michael Hall, Michael Schoeffling

John Hughes got it. The teenage ‘life, the universe and everything else is against me’ phenomena that grabs hold in those years of early adolescence. Hughes captured it, twisted it, humourised it, but never demonised it. In a society which often bemoans the pre-adult demographic, where an internet driven social media age embarks primarily on straining relationships between old and young, films such as The Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and Sixteen Candles hold even more reverence. There’s no cynicism here, only joyfully glum appreciation. Of life lessons and abridged maturity. John Hughes reminds us that teenage years are not tepid, far from it, and that teenagers are not turbulent. Most of all, he reminds us to laugh and to cherish a generous time lived in all our lives.

Waking up on the morning of her 16th birthday, Sam (Molly Ringwald) is frustrated by the lack of overnight bodily development. Exacerbating matters, her entire family are too caught up in the hysteria of her sister’s impending wedding that Sam’s landmark day of celebration has been shunned far from the forefront of any of their minds. School treats her with the same apparent disinterest too; Sam only has eyes for senior student Jake Ryan (Michael Schoeffling) who she believes is unaware of her own existence. Enter witty, geeky Ted (Anthony Michael Hall) and let the chaotic, humorous and well-meaning love maze commence.

Sixteen Candles was John Hughes’ first outing in the director’s chair, so it would be conceivable to forgive a sprinkling of over-eagerness on his part, or even stout rigidity. Forget that. Hughes sinks the nostalgic, adolescent lobe of his creativity-centre into the plundering paranoia of teenage high school life and comes up with a thriving, fun piece of filmmaking that doesn’t take itself too seriously — which at the end of the day is kind of the point considering his characters do take ultra-seriously a time in their lives that should be driven by inhibition. Subsequently though, importantly, it never boils over into caricature territory. You always get the feeling that these people on screen could be real people in real life, and that their self-aware predicaments are similarly scattered throughout schools all over the empirical world. In this sense, there’s an intrinsic personal attraction present, one that encapsulates the viewer because he or she knows that they have been where Sam’s emotions currently reside, or that they are even still living there.

And the thing is, as Sam worries over-dramatically about a missing sex quiz, or her inert awkwardness at the mercy of the love of her life Jake, it’s obvious that none of this really matters: “You know? Neither one of us is gonna die if it doesn’t happen for us.” This epitomises the opposite mentality which is prevalent throughout the film, an important one yes, but not a mentality based on set-in-stone principles. High-school life exists in a strange, disconnected bubble separated from the rest of civilisation. From when the bell rings at nine o’clock until it resounds six or seven hours later, you’re only focused on inter-class gossip or what’s on the lunch menu, far removed of the outside world. Hughes generates this introverted atmosphere exceedingly well, and mirrors it with the unimportant struggles of the teenager. It’s because Sam’s misgivings are heralded by herself and her peers as the worst problems (or best solutions) on earth that a natural hilarity ensues.

Central to many of the funny goings-on is Anthony Michael Hall, whose freshman Ted is fuelled by a bet made amongst his pals prompting a need to sleep with Sam. Ted’s youthful insecurities are often hidden under a surface sheen of semi-arrogance and energy. He’s a bit of a chancer, not least when making a second move on his target merely moments after being forgiven for the first eager attempt. Hall’s portrayal of this youngster unsure of his convictions is often witty as he snaps back many of the funniest lines. His persistence in the face of staunch rebuttals — mainly from Molly Ringwald’s Sam — is chuckle-laden, and the pair share a flourishing dynamic. Ringwald has much of the film resting on her premature shoulders as her various plots and non-successes are the basis of the amusing proceedings, and she does a tremendous job as the blissfully suffering lead. Both Hall and Ringwald would go on to work more as part of Hughes’ teenage parable series of movies, and their respective primitive deliveries here, plumb, full of comedy and wholehearted, offer only a few reasons why.

Perhaps when all is said and done there’s really not much difference between the material struggles of a teenage-existence and adulthood. Alcohol-drowned parties remain alcohol-drowned parties no matter how old you get. Relationships are still relationships until the knot has been tied. Sixteen Candles alludes to this continuity, embodied by way of the utterly chaotic preparation and execution of Sam’s sister’s wedding — a tumultuous pandemonium succeeded by no other. There’s no biased cynicism towards an age or demographic superfluous in the grand scheme of things because in the grand scheme of things, the trials of adulthood can be just as nonsensical and anarchic, yet sweet in nature (look out for a wedding commandeered by muscle-relaxant) as those teenage years.

Sixteen Candles is the first in a line of emotive comedies that paved the way for films from the Judd Apatow’s and Richard Linklater’s of this world. It’s not difficult to comprehend why John Hughes movies (his early work in particular) are so affectionately regarded these days. Relatable characters, charming mindfulness and funny screenplays are just three of the key proponents for present-day recognition, and are certainly three boastful characteristics on display here.