- Movie Rating -

Weird Science (1985)

| August 2, 1985

Weird Science has been criticized for building up a premise that it can’t quite muster the courage to carry out.  The premise offers a sort-of teenage porn fantasy all about creating the perfect woman with all the right curves, and hopefully all the right appetites.  Yet, since this is a John Hughes movie, we’re not surprised when it becomes something a little more human.  Oh, the sexy parts are still there, but this isn’t the movie you might expect.

Hughes has fashioned together a sort of modern retelling of The Bride of Frankenstein in which the mad scientist has been replaced by gawky teenage boys Gary and Wyatt (Anthony Michael Hall and Iian Mitchell-Smith) who are so unpopular at school that they have become local legend for getting beaten up at the homecoming game.  Instead of a laboratory, they have their home computer.

One night while Wyatt’s parents are out of town, they begin fooling around with their computer and input the specifics for what they consider to be the perfect woman.  A lightening strike later, a sexy figure emerges from the bathroom and asks in a throaty voice: “What would you little maniacs like to do first?”

She is Lisa (Kelly LeBrock), a gorgeous brunette with a luscious English accent and curves in all the right places.  She’s also, to their surprise, intelligent, sensitive and has a lovely sense of humor.  She genuinely cares about these guys and makes it her mission to get them to loosen up and have fun.

That’s the particular magic of this movie.  Yes, it’s funny and silly and goofy and loaded with wall-to-wall sex jokes but there’s a human touch here.  It’s the same human touch that he brought earlier to Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club.  It is what separates his work from the usual teenage sex comedy.  The normal pattern is to load the film with sex jokes but leave the characters on the floor.  Hughes’ pattern is to give us characters that we care about, add a human dimension and then lay it on top of the comedy.

That’s what he has done here.  Lisa becomes a motherly figure to the boys and they discover something about themselves.  Of course, there’s a lot of special effects and of lot of teen movie sex jokes but it’s all in service of watching the two guys grow a little.  In the end, they have had the same revelation about themselves as Marty did in Back to the Future.  I like this approach.  It is funny and heartfelt.

About the Author:

Jerry Roberts is a film critic and operator of two websites, Armchair Cinema and Armchair Oscars.
(1985) View IMDB Filed in: Comedy