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Of the plethora of teen-based films released in 1985, THE BREAKFAST CLUB stands as one of the best, but it's still not exactly a shining example of the genre. Set in suburban Chicago, the film features five high school students from different social backgrounds who must spend a Saturday
sitting in the school library as punishment for various infractions. Estevez, a star wrestler, is the jock; Ringwald portrays a rich, spoiled "princess"; Hall is a nerdy "brain;" Sheedy plays an introverted loner; and Nelson is a rebellious punk. Nelson fixes the library doors so they will remain
closed, giving the students a little privacy. Confronting their values head on, with an articulate and sarcastic verbal assault, Nelson works on the others until they slowly begin talking with one another. THE BREAKFAST CLUB, paradoxically, is one of the few teen-oriented films that truly
addresses the troubles of its characters, yet it falters in dealing with the issues raised. Director-writer Hughes, though he gives the material a sense of fun and achieves several moments of genuine warmth, too often resorts to obvious cliches, stereotypes, and easy answers, and throws in the
near-obligatory rock video as well. His cast, on the other hand, is a fine ensemble that infuses the material with the sense of reality that Hughes's script often misses.