Ahh, the 80’s. A decade where the teen comedies seemed to explode on the film. There were a multitude of these movies focused on the misadventures of high school and college kids. The all had their various moments in the pop culture, but this movie was probably one of the most famous. While there are several memorable lines and scenes, let’s face it, this movie is famous for the pool scene. So let’s get on with today’s movie, Fast Times At Ridgemont High.
The plot: Based on the real life adventures of Cameron Crowe, Fast Times At Ridgemont High focuses on several high school students throughout the school year. There is Brad, the popular senior that works a number of jobs in order to pay off his car. His sister Stacy, who worries about not being able to get in a relationship, begins to explore her own sexual awakenings. Mark works at the movie theater and wants to date Stacy but has no experience with girls. Mark is Mike’s best friend who makes his money placing bets and scalping tickets. Spicoli is a stoner surfer dude that is constantly clashing with his history teacher, Mr. Hand.
Although critics panned it during it’s initial release, Fast Times has an 80% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Though he praised the performances of some of the actors, Roger Ebert called it a “scuz-pit of a movie.” Initially, it was only given a limited release in theaters but after it earned over $2 million in it’s opening weekend, the studio expanded it’s release. It would wind up earning over $27 million and has become one of the most iconic high school comedies, a feat that surprised most of the cast.
It might not be the greatest comedy of all times, but I think it is very funny. One amazing thing about this movie is the number of people that were in this film that would go on to more famous roles. Sean Penn, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Forest Whitaker, Eric Stoltz, and to a lesser degree you have Phoebe Cates and Judge Reinhold. The cast was great in this film. Sean Penn and Ray Walston (Mr. Hand) had some of the best interactions in the movie. And of course, let us not forget the pool scene, where probably every teenage boy that saw this in theaters got an instant crush on Phoebe Cates. It can be a little bit hard to follow at times as the movie jumps between all the different characters over the course of the school year, but aside from that, this is a fun movie to watch.
So if you are in the mood for an 80’s teenage comedy, then put this on and prepare to laugh.
Rating: 4 out of 5