Thursday, July 23, 2009

Adventures in Babysitting (1987)

Ok, here's another movie that falls a bit outside the boundaries of "Classic Hollywood", but you know what? I just turned 21 a few days ago, and I found this childhood favorite at K-Mart, so I'm going to make a post about it.

Elizabeth Shue plays Chris Parker, a teenager who takes a babysitting job after her boyfriend cancels their date. Unfortunately for her, this is the night her best friend Brenda decides to run away from home and ends up getting stuck in a bus station in downtown Chicago, so Chris ends up taking Brad (Keith Coogan), a teenager who is in love with her, his Thor-obsessed sister Sara (Maia Brewton), and Brad's perverted next door neighbor Daryl (Anthony Rapp). Once in Chicago, they end up on a string of misadventures, including a one-armed trucker, a Playboy magazine, and a carjacker who looks like Whoopi Goldberg.

The film is pure 80's cheese, don't get me wrong, but Elizabeth Shue actually does a pretty good job in this film. Chris is a smart young woman determined to get out of this situation with all of her kids intact. It never feels like it falls onto the "idiot plot", where the characters stupidly get themselves into mishap after mishap, instead they're forced into their various situations, and Elizabeth Shue does a great job of making Chris appear both capable and overwhelmed.

The film also features some very funny moments where we get to see what Brenda is going through at the bus station, which is populated with drug addicts, criminals, and homeless people.

The film is really one of my favorite movies from childhood, and rewatching it only reinforces my love for it. It's hard to actually recommend it, because the film is overflowing with nostalgia and I doubt there are a lot of people who necessarily feel the same way. But who cares, it's Adventures in Babysitting.

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