Try a Little Tenderness

John Hughes’ Pretty in Pink is quite possibly the most ingenious, and yet humbly modest, movie that I have ever had the privilege to watch. Not only does Hughes truthfully capture the essence of the emotional roller coaster that’s wrapped up in any average teenager, but he also portrays the rational  side of teenage life to viewers in reasonable and justifiable ways. Andie, played by Molly Ringwald, not only deals with a hectic school schedule, but also a father who has trouble getting out of bed in the morning, and a friend who thinks she’s the only thing he needs to survive in life. Not only that, but Andie’s living on the “wrong” side of the tracks and her motherless journey into adulthood leaves her dreaming of more than what life has given her. When she meets Blane, a “richie” from school who wants more than just material possessions, they start to hit if off, despite their different reputations and friends’ disapproval.

It’s no wonder teenagers are often viewed as being emotionally high-strung. Hughes has created complex characters who deal with difficult social and political situations, while growing up and trying to understand their personal identities and significance within the world. No matter what age you are, you can’t deny that you wouldn’t be highly emotional as well, and I think that Hughes delivers this message of the movie on a silver (gold, or bronze) platter. The world would be a simpler and happier place if we just held compassion for everyone, no matter who they are. Or as Otis Redding says, “you got to try a little tenderness”.

But dancing your cares away, like Duckie epically does in this movie, can always help ease the tension and stress of life situations too.


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