Rest in peace old friend...

The likelihood of saying anything new or even insightful about the movies of the recently deceased John Hughes is slim. I loved his early movies - so did my children - and we saw them all over and over again. The girls knew the dialogue to "Breakfast Club" in their sleep, we each cherished "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" for its portrayal of radical hospitality and all of us would break into Ducky's lip sync of "Try a Little Tenderness" from time to time when it played in supermarkets or shopping malls.

(NOTE: this is one of those classic Hughes' scenes where one of the outsiders transforms an ordinary moment into something extraordinary by sharing a little humor, style and heart.)

To say that Hughes touched our family would be an understatement: he gave a tender but realistic (and always commercially viable) treatment to teen alienation in America. He helped others - teens and adults - know what it felt like to be shut out and judged. He also showed us how barriers and divisions can be overcome and how healing this is for all involved. He was a master of comedic timing, had a gigantic heart and soul and loved bringing people together. What's more, he did it with real humor and grace.

In a word, he was a missionary dedicated to helping us overcome the alienation of class differences in a country that pretends they don't exist. He was also an ambassador for that upside down kingdom where children and outsiders are often our wisest rabbis. And he used pop music in movies better than anyone else at the time and had spot on taste!

Like J.D. Salinger - but a whole lot more accessible and nice - John Hughes lifted up the feelings and experiences of American young people as authentic. He carefully crafted little windows into the souls of hurting kids while always celebrating the possibility of hope and redemption. The world will be a little darker without his light and I am glad he shared so much with so many. Rest in peace old friend...

Comments

SGF said…
Great post and absolutely great movies......Thanks for taking those of us who read this blog along on your amazing trip to Canada. It was fun and interesting to read!
RJ said…
thanks brother... there's more to come, too

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