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The Other (and Maybe Better) Brat Packers
by Tim Josephs

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You can bet somewhere right now this is on TV

You can bet somewhere right now this is on TV
I was flipping around the channels the other day when I stumbled upon a very familiar sight. For the most part I like having cable TV. I get to see original films and shows like Curb Your Enthusiasm and movies I might have missed in the theater. However, there doesn't seem to be a ton of variety. You can always seem to find BACK TO THE FUTURE or one of it's sequels playing. The same is true for any number of Adam Sandler or Rob Schneider movies. And if you're looking for a teenage angst film from the 80's, well, you'll probably be in luck. And on that day I encountered a staple from that latter category: THE BREAKFAST CLUB.

Now, I have no problem with the movie. It's a fine film and I like it, but does it have to be on all the time? This inevitably got me thinking about the Brat Pack, as most of the "official" members are in that one. And sure, they've all had
He'll always be Duckie to me

He'll always be Duckie to me
varying degrees of success in their careers, but what about the other Brat Packers, those teen actors from the 80s who were just on the periphery? The ones who maybe should have been considered part of the group? (Some of whom, by the way, who have had much better careers.)

Someone like Jon Cryer. Sure, now he's known for that utterly hilarious sitcom with Charlie Sheen but for a lot of people he is and always will be Duckie. PRETTY IN PINK is often cited as a Brat Pack movie with stars Molly Ringwald and Andrew McCarthy. But for my money Duckie is the best character in the film. Cryer was also in NO SMALL AFFAIR with another Brat Pack alum, Demi Moore.

Speaking of PRETTY IN PINK, what about that great bastard (www.matchflick.com/column/1863) James Spader? He was also one of the more
Why not Ferris?

Why not Ferris?
interesting characters in that movie. Plus he co-starred with McCarthy in LESS THAN ZERO as well as MANNEQUIN.

And now that LESS THAN ZERO is on the table, how could we not mention Robert Downey, Jr.? He also appeared in JOHNNY BE GOOD and WEIRD SCIENCE with Anthony Michael Hall as well as THE PICK-UP ARTIST with Ringwald.

And how about another LESS THAN ZERO star, Jami Gertz? In addition to that one she was also in SIXTEEN CANDLES.

And what about someone like Matthew Broderick? Sure, one of the greatest movies of all time, FERRIS BUELLER'S DAY OFF, doesn't actually have any Brat Pack folks in it (though it was directed by John Hughes), but Broderick did star with Brat Pack member Ally Sheedy in WAR GAMES. (Okay, admittedly not a great argument for Brat Pack-ness. And if you don't like this one you definitely won't like the next
What about these guys?

What about these guys?

What about Kristy Swanson? Alright, perhaps the original Buffy doesn't belong on this list, what with just a few relevant credits to her name. But she was Duckette in PRETTY IN PINK, she had an unforgettable role as Simone in the aforementioned FERRIS BUELLER and, most importantly, I just find her adorable.

Okay, I saved the best for last. This actor seemed to be in every other 80s movie and of all the teens to come from that decade has arguably had the best career (with the possible exception of Downey, Jr.). Of course I'm talking about John Cusak. We all know about his role in SIXTEEN CANDLES alongside Brat Packers Ringwald and Hall. He was also in CLASS with McCarthy, BETTER OFF DEAD with Moore, and TRUE COLORS with Spader.

Okay, yes I know Spader isn't technically a member of the Brat Pack, but damn it, maybe he should be. Maybe they all should be.

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Movie Musings
Every other Tuesday

Thoughts, observations, conjectures, complaints about movies and mostly how they relate to me personally. If you're looking for something a little broader, try Ebert.

Other Columns
Other columns by Tim Josephs:

So Long 2013, and MatchFlickers!

The Season for Peace, Presents, & Puncture Wounds

Women are Once Again Kicking Ass

Chewing the Scenery

The Greatest President We Never Had

All Columns

Tim Josephs
Born to write (literally much to the displeasure of his mother, he emerged with a pencil clutched in one tiny fist), Tim spends most of his days crafting epic monosyllabic poems, new comical titles to his favorite Beatles' songs (Hey, Dude), and angry letters to local businesses that have wronged him in some way. He's really an okay guy once you get to know him.

If you have a comment, question, or suggestion, you can send a message to Tim Josephs by clicking here.

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