Review of 'Ferris Bueller's Day Off'

ferris_bueller.jpg Serial absentee Ferris Bueller (Matthew Broderick) is determined to make the most of his childhood so fakes an illness to stay home from school. He convinces his actually sick friend Cameron (Alan Ruck) and girlfriend Sloane (Mia Sara) to join him, taking Cameron's father's beloved red Ferrari for a day on the town with the suspicious school principal Ed Rooney (Jeffrey Jones) hot on their tail never mind the determination of Jeanie (Jennifer Grey), Ferris' sister, who is also determined to see Ferris exposed. In the course of the day they will take in a baseball game, a trip to an art gallery, singing on a float in a parade and discover a lot more about themselves…

A coming of age film from the master, John Hughes, who directed Sixteen Candles, Home Alone, Pretty in Pink and Uncle Buck. “Ferris Bueller” can't be taken too seriously, this is a film of fun speaking to the idea of living life to the full (what it says about school is not so kind).

The acting from Broderick, here during his early years on Broadway, is perfectly pitched with the viewer convinced of his youth (despite being actually close to 30), engaging us with his frequent talking directly to camera. We are on his side and root him on in his quest to enjoy his ill-gotten day away from school. Jeffrey Jones as the principal is the quintessential buffoon and baddie who continually suffers physically for his hubris of youth (much like the robbers in “Home Alone”). It is this tone that slightly rankles - The absurdity of the film in places, the treatment of adults, in general, like idiots though, of course, it is precisely this that the film would appeal to the young (or young at heart). Best bet is to turn any sensitivity you might have to stupidity and just enjoy.

Very silly but with a strong and honest emotional core. Perhaps a bit tired and unsophisticated to a modern audience, it is still occasionally funny.

Rating: “It is OK but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2019-11-17

Directed by: John Hughes

Studio: Paramount Pictures

Year: 103

Length: 1986 minutes

Genre: Comedy

Other reviewed films by John Hughes: