Less Than Zero

Less Than ZeroLess Than Zero is the 1987 film based loosely on the novel of the same name by Bret Easton Ellis. Ellis wasn’t initially a fan of the film and felt that most of the characters had been miscast, although he did have positive things to say about Robert Downey Jr and James Spader’s performances.

Andrew McCarthy is Clay, a young man in his first year at college who recently found out his girlfriend has been cheating on him with drug addict and close friend Julian, played by Robert Downey Jr. When Clay comes home for Christmas his girlfriend Blair, Jami Gertz’s character, tries to act like nothing has happened. As the film progresses, Julian’s drug problem becomes worse the plot revolves around his life and how it’s spiralling out of control.

The film version was very different from the book mainly because of the strong anti drugs message that it demonstrates and also the fact that Clay’s character is quite different and a lot of the decisions he makes aren’t the same.

A sequel to Less Than Zero has been written by Ellis called Imperial Bedrooms. A film is currently being talked about and is due to be released at some point in 2012.

Movies sometimes portray things like drug addiction and addictions treatment in a way that differs from what they really are like in real life.

Less Than Zero Rating

A bit dark in parts but some excellent acting from a great cast and anyway, the Bangles’ brilliant version of Hazy Shade of Winter means it was always going to get a good review from me! Less Than Zero gets a Brat Pack rating of 8/10.

Less Than Zero Characters

Clay – Played by Andrew McCarthy
Blair – Played by Jami Gertz
Julian – Played by Robert Downey Jr
Rip – Played by James Spader

Less Than Zero Trivia

$38 was the fee Brad Pitt got paid for his uncredited appearance.

Less Than Zero was the first movie where Robert Downey was credited as Robert Downey Jr.

Clay Easton was originally going to be played by Keanu Reeves.

Less Than Zero Links

Less Than Zero at 80s Movies Rewind

Less Than Zero Review from 1987 by Roger Ebert

War Games

War Games Movie

War Games

War Games stars Brat Packer Ally Sheedy as well as possible Brat Packer and now best known as significant other of the horsey one from Sex and The City, Matthew Broderick. It was released in 1983 and was way ahead of it’s time because of the computer technology that was used. The movie was a critical as well as a box office success. It cost $12m to make but grossed over $79m after just five months in the US and Canada. War Games received generally positive reviews and was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Cinematography, Writing and Screenplay.

Broderick plays David Lightman, a lazy student but motivated hacker. When his grades at school start to slide, David hacks into the school computer and improves them somewhat. At the same time, he also does the favour for classmate Jennifer Mack, played by Sheedy. While dialing numbers from his computer to find information on games one day, David stumbles across a computer which does not identify itself. This is where the movie really begins in earnest and after a time it is revealed the computer actually has the power to start World War III. From here, David and Jennifer go on an adventure, trying to stop the potential disaster.

War Games Rating

Not a bad movie at all and well ahead of it’s time, War Games gets a Brat Pack rating of 7/10.

War Games Characters

Jennifer – Played by Ally Sheedy

David – Played by Matthew Broderick

War Games Trivia

Both a Galaga and a Galaxian machine were delivered to Matthew Broderick’s home by the studio, which gave him two months to practice for the arcade scene.

Martin Brest was the original director of War Games. A number of the scenes he shot are still in the movie.

Professor Stephen Hawking was the writers’ main inspiration for the character of Professor Stephen Falken. The studio approached Hawking about appearing in the film but he felt his disability might be being exploited.

War Games Links

Interesting article on War Games from Wired.com

War Games Review from 1983 by Roger Ebert

Weird Science

Yet another John Hughes classic, Weird Science made every teenage boy’s fantasy a reality, create your own real life dream girl from the comfort of your own bedroom!

Wyatt and Gary are two awkward American high school teenagers who are struggling with girls and the popular crowd. On top of this they have Wyatt’s bully of a brother Chet making their lives a misery.

While watching Frankenstein one night, they come up with the idea to create their own perfect woman! Using their computer, magazine cut outs, some jump leads and a Barbie doll, Wyatt and Gary get to work. Thanks to some strange weather conditions and a power surge, up pops the stunning Lisa!

Gary and Wyatt

Gary and Wyatt

With Lisa’s help, the boys turn from a couple of geeks into popular Ferrari driving teens who can suddenly pick up girls with relative ease.

The usual John Hughes party ensues with a few twists and turns before the climax involving their families and some strange men on bikes!

Weird Science Rating

An all time classic, fun and great to watch more than once, Weird Science gets a Brat Pack rating of 9/10.

Weird Science Trivia

The actor who played Wyatt somewhat turned his backing on Hollywood and is now a high level graduate assistant in the English department of a Texas University.

One of the kids from the mall scene in Weird Science, Cliff, was also one of Anthony Michael Hall’s sidekicks in Sixteen Candles.

Weird Science Characters

Gary Wallace – played by Anthony Michael Hall

Lisa – played by Kelly LeBrock

Ian – played by Robert Downey Jr

Weird Science Links

Buy Weird Science

Weird Science @ IMDB

Weird Science @ Rotten Tomatoes

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is one of my favourite movies of the 80’s and it still has a huge fan base over 20 years after it was first released.

Not really a Brat Pack movie for me but it was requested so much by visitors to the site that I decided to give the film it’s very own page.

Matthew Broderick of ‘I’m married to Carrie from Sex and the City’ fame plays Ferris, a cheeky and very like-able high school senior who decides to take his ninth sick day of the year.

Ferris spends the day in Chicago after he convinces his best friend Cameron to take his Dad’s precious Ferrari out for a spin. The pair take Ferris’ girlfriend Sloane along for the ride.

Even though there is nothing wrong with Ferris, rumours go around the school that he is at death’s door which sparks the campaign to ‘Save Ferris’.

Dean of student’s Ed Rooney knows all about Ferris but can never catch him in the act.

Ferris’ sister Jeanie also knows Ferris’ game and is fed up of him being an angel in his parent’s eyes.

Ferris Bueller Rating

Mainly comedy based but also an amazing tale of a kid with a lot of luck, charm and some good sense. Deserves no less than a Brat Pack rating of 10/10.

Ferris Bueller Characters

Ferris – The star of the show, he manages to avoid any trouble and also enjoys talking directly to the audience.

Cameron – Ferris geeky best friend who is scared of his dad and pretty much everything else for that matter.

Jeanie – The long suffering sister of Ferris who is jealous that he can get away with murder.

Sloane – The loyal girlfriend.

Starring; Matthew Broderick, Jennifer Grey, and Charlie Sheen.

Ferris Bueller Trivia

Ferris hacks his way into the school computer to change his attendance record in a very similar scene to another Matthew Broderick movie, War Games.

The restaurant used in the movie is the same one where Kirby has a date with Dale in St Elmo’s Fire.

Ferris Bueller Links

Ferris Bueller @ IMDB

Ferris Bueller @ Rotten Tomatoes