Tuesday, September 23, 2014

7 Movies About Ditching School

by Doug Schultz
It's the end of September, and school is in full swing. Which means everyone JUST NEEDS A BREAK ALREADY. It's like, get off my back, teach! Give me some space, Mom! Stop suffocating me, court-appointed psychiatrist!

1. Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986)

Well, duh. This movie is done so well -- it's a classic, really -- that seemingly no other filmmaker dares tackle the subject of skipping class, because why bother? What else is there to say? I mean, DURRRRR, it's one of my TOP FIVE FAVORITE FILMS OF ALL TIME(?), a list I've probably rewritten 17 times since that podcast dropped in early 2012. Should Ferris Bueller's Day Off really be there? Should it be The Blues Brothers instead? Maybe? Yes? The answer's yes? Still, Chicago REPREZENT!

2. The Girl Next Door (2004)
Barring a few promising scenes of Elisha Cuthbert getting her sexy back (email me for the GIFs), this movie (best Italian accent): "She 'a no good!" But it doesn't start off bad. In fact, one of the more decent early sequences shows Matthew Kidman (Emile Hirsche), an uptight high school senior, as he contemplates skipping school to go to a beach party (BEACH PARTY!). The scene features great music, interesting direction and actual stakes, which the film quickly drops in favor of Timothy Olyphant acting like a cartoon character.

3. Senior Skip Day (2008)

Direct-to-video, but SO WHAT? Haven't seen it, but WHO CARES? I mean, just LOOK at that title! The principal/villain in the film is named Mr. Frankfurt Dickwalder, and he's played by Larry Miller. Doesn't that pretty much tell you everything you need to know? The trailer (above) closes with the venerable (or is it "venereal"?) Tara Reid stating, "You totally stole that trick from Ferris Bueller's Day Off." In the business, this is what's called PAYING HOMAGE.

4. She's the Man (2006)
Amanda Bynes used to be a pretty big deal. Then she went a little nutty on Instagram, and quit acting via Twitter (subsequently "unretiring" a month later). I'm not gonna lie -- I've seen WAY too many episodes of What I Like About You to judge anyone too harshly. In She's the Man, Bynes plays Viola, the twin sister of Sebastian (James Kirk, sans Tiberius). When Sebastian ditches school to attend a music festival in London, Viola dresses up like her brother, and starts attending his elite boarding school. The goal (GET IT?) is to join the boys' soccer team (you get it). Hilarious Three's Company misunderstandings ensue.

5. Saved! (2004)

Jesus! I have no knowledge of this film, but I TOTALLY remember this preview (right now, you're WATCHIN' TRAILERZ WITH DOUG!). Saved! features a who's who of A-list(?) talent: Mandy Moore, Macaulay Culkin, Jena Malone, Patrick Fugit, Eva Amurri and Mary-Louise Parker. Described as a religious comedy/drama/satire, three teenagers (including Kevin McCallister in a wheelchair) become good friends after they cut class together, bonding over an unwanted pregnancy. Oh, and Mandy Moore appears to play the part that Amanda Bynes later performed in Easy A (that of self-righteous bitch). So, you know ... connections.

6. Detroit Rock City (1999)
It's 1978, and four high schoolers -- Hawk (Edward Furlong), Lex (Giuseppe Andrews), Trip (James DeBello) and Jam (Sam Huntington) -- ditch school (and their homes and families), "borrow" a car and drive from Cleveland to Detroit for a KISS concert. Totally worth it, I'm sure. Listen, we all have our hobbies. For example, when I was in high school, I used to collect PEZ dispensers. Nerd alert, right? Well, these boys (and millions of real-life weirdos) preferred to obsess over a makeup-wearing, musically inept carnival act that pretended to be a legendary rock band, despite a complete lack of self-awareness. REGARDLESS, I applaud the rebellious passion of youth!

7. Child's Play (1988)
Because #ScaryMovieMonth is only a week away (HOLY SHIT!), let's close with a horror movie. Chucky (Brad Dourif) tells his owner Andy (Alex Vincent) to skip class and take him to Eddie Caputo's (Neil Giuntoli) house, so the "Good Guy" doll can exact revenge on his turncoat friend. Andy and Chucky take the 'L' to a Chicago ghetto, and Chucky kills Eddie through an elaborate, Final Destination-type stunt: he disconnects the gas line to the stove, and provokes Eddie to fire his gun, which results in the two-story shack EXPLODING. Chucky escapes, and Andy is placed in a mental hospital. The lesson here? STAY IN SCHOOL.


  1. I love Childs play. Great interview in the podcasts with Tom Holland if you've not heard it. I'll be digging the Vhs out next month for sure
    And we all know Ferris bueller is the best skipping school film. Its also your number 1 choice But I now have an urge to see The Girl next door again.

  2. Wait, you've never seen "Saved!"? Get on that right away; it's actually a pretty damn good little movie and everyone's work in it is worth seeing. (There's one line delivery by Moore while throwing a Bible that's making me chuckle just replaying it in my head.)

  3. Senior Skip Day....SEE IT!!!

    It's one of those "messes that works".

    Lea Thompson plays the Mom - and looks way too young for the role. Tara Reid is her daughter and looks way too old. And you get to see a bong being built out of empty water cooler bottles.

  4. You can quicken through the classes,paper help or take as much time as you require.

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