From the Vaults: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

ferris_buellers_day_offIt has been a while since I have opened up the vaults and taken a look at something in the past that needs a new eye to its legacy, so why not spin the giant steel wheel and see what we have today. Well if it isn’t one of John Hughes most popular movies of all time. I will state this right away, I think that John Hughes is one of the best filmmakers of all time. He truly revolutionized the 80’s and became a true coming of age icon. However, I do feel that a lot of his movies are looked at through a certain “rose tinted glasses” and some of his bad movies tend to get looked at with the same wave of nostalgia and love. While Sixteen Candles has had a few problems as it has aged over the years, it can still be looked at as a product of its time. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, on the other hand, is a movie that I feel does not hold up in the time that it was created and the time that we find ourselves in today. It is because of this that this movie finds itself being pulled out of the vault and evaluated for the failings that need to be addressed.


John Hughes Movie

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is a John Hughes movie at the end of the day and as such, there are qualities to it that would sell it over other less qualified directors. For the first part, there is a quirkiness to the characters and to the setting that makes someone like Ferris Bueller endearing. The grandiosity of the movie and the situations makes them enjoyable and in tantalizing as well.

I do believe this movie shows the true power and genius of someone like John Hughes. He took a bad script and, by all accounts, a bad movie and made it into something that was enjoyable and fun. So while I have a great deal of problems with this movie, John Hughes direction and style is certainly not one of them.


The Villain, Dean Edward Rooney, is Right

So let’s start off this long train of problems with something at least intriguing. Throughout the entire movie Ed Rooney is the stearn Dean of Students who is trying to catch the Ferris Bueller and his friends while they are skipping school. Throughout the movie, Rooney goes through absolute hell and breaks the law in order to catch Bueller in the act, eventually leading him to sit disheveled on a school bus.

Now I am not going to sit here and make excuses for the fact that this man is clearly obsessed, broke into someone’s house, and is generally a dick. But all things considered, this guy is just committed to keeping students in school. He clearly gives enough of a shit about students to inquire when someone has decided to skip school and he does see Ferris Bueller as a person who is a dick and a bad influence on other people. He is certainly an asshat, yes, but he does have intentions that make sense and would make him the hero in another movie.

downloadThe Ludicrous Nature of it All is a Little Too Much

I can get how everyone in high school wants to have that big day off where you go out and do literally everything. But all of this is just a little too much all things considered. Okay, so they end up in a carnival and have a night out on the town. Good times, all around. But this idea that he is able to get away with all of this bullshit, thrown in with the fact that the entire school apparently gives a shit about this little sleaze ball is just too much for me to comprehend.

Ferris Bueller is a Prick

I’m just going to come out and say it, Ferris Bueller is an absolute asshole. He is a manipulative human being who forces people to do things that they don’t want to do, he is resentful to his parents for buying him an expensive computer instead of a car instead of being grateful for the gifts that he has been given, he is clearly an immature person who has no regard for his grades, his life, or the feeling of others. Ferris Bueller is an absolute dick. Even when they steal Cameron’s dad’s car and crash the fucker, he is willing to let his friend suffer horrific verbal and possible physical abuse just so he doesn’t have to take responsibility for himself. Yeah, the movie is portrayed as Cameron finally standing up for himself, but he never once stands up to his friend’s abusive attitude.

The main reason that Ferris Bueller is so likable in this movie is a combination of John Hughes quirky directing and Matthew Broderick charm and witty personality. In less experienced hands, this movie would have been a disaster. I take offense to it becuase the other cons can be slightly subjective. Yeah outlandishness can be fun and sometimes you need a wild comedy like that and yeah Dean Rooney is a sleaze ball. But Ferris Bueller is a person that people should not emulate and making him a main character and making him as likable as he is portrayed, that is a problem that I take offense to.


If it weren’t for the directing of John Hughes and the cast of likable characters, this movie would have been an absolute bomb. Hughes is lucky that he can make his own bad ideas look genuinely good through his work. While I like the majority of his other work, this is a movie I will be happy to see lost to the sands of time.

Final Score 1/5

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