Oh, this one’s a keeper.
A quintessential rite of passage for any girl born between 1965 and 1980, depending on the mood, John Hughes’s Pretty In Pink becomes a) the reason why an awesome soundtrack was put together; b) a very Eighties take on the Cinderella paradygm; c) the lowest common denominator for anything connected to nostalgia; and d) all of the above.
It also makes for a classic trailer, in its own right. The opening credits montage of Molly Ringwald getting dressed and ready for school [i.e. is the chick flick equivalent of the other Eighties staple, the “hey, let’s go grab some guns” action montage] is spliced throughout the whole thing, acting as a visual refrain to the Psychedelic Furs’ lyrics for the title song. Every possible subplot is explored, as far as the teen characters are involved (guess that poor Harry Dean Stanton not letting go of his deadbeat wife didn’t resonate at the box office), while the main plot is, well, laid bare. At least the third act resolution is left as a guess.
Which makes me think of another trailer that made the rounds back then (video release, maybe? dunno), this one with an unusually Duckie-heavy slant. Did wacky borderline obsessive third wheel sell more than star-crossed class-transcending teenage love? Really? Oh, ok.
If you never saw it as a grownup, be sure to check out The Spader in all his own sniveling glory. He looks so much better with the benefit of some distance.