Writer and Director John Hughes passed away yesterday at the age of 59. Hughes was best known for what The New York Times rightly terms "a slew of films in the 1980s that defined what it meant to be an American teenager, from the music to the fashion to the social faux pas." Hughes both wrote and directed such hits as Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Weird Science, The Breakfast Club, and Sixteen Candles.
As Entertainment Weekly notes, Hughes' films presented adolescents who weren't "merely mindless horn dogs peeking through peep holes into the girl’s locker-room shower; they were funny, smart, and troubled — fully formed characters in a genre that usually presented teens as little more than bundles of hormones." He wrote about the life of the American teenager with a kind humor but a respectful seriousness--an understanding that at 16, every decision is a matter of life and death.
For more on John Hughes, check out this touching post from a blogger who became his unlikely pen pal after writing a piece of fan mail. Below are clips from some of his best known (and best loved) works.
Ferris Bueller gives a lesson on "Faking Out Parents" in Ferris Bueller's Day Off:
The trailer for Weird Science:
And lastly, the lunch sequence from The Breakfast Club, the film that taught us all that "If you mess with the bull, you get the horns:"