Pretty in Pink (1986)

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Critic Consensus: Molly Ringwald gives an outstanding performance in this sweet, intelligent teen comedy that takes an ancient premise and injects it with insight and wit.

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John Hughes crafts an exemplary '80s Brat Pack romance out of the standard Cinderella story in Pretty in Pink. Andie Walsh (Molly Ringwald) is a teenager who lives in the dingy part of town with her terminally underemployed dad (Harry Dean Stanton). She works at a record store with eccentric Ionia (Annie Potts) and is considered a misfit at her uppity high school, but somehow she rises above them all. Her oddball best friend, Duckie (Jon Cryer), is hopelessly in love with her, so he causes trouble for her romantic pursuits. When local rich kid Blaine (Andrew McCarthy) develops a fascination with her, they go out on a date together. Visiting the home bases of each social clique, they are basically ridiculed for their audacity to date one another. When Blaine eventually asks the delighted Andie to the prom, he is threatened by his rich friend Steff (James Spader). The romance versus high school social politics finally culminates at the big night of the prom. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, Rovi

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Cast

Molly Ringwald
as Andie Walsh
Andrew McCarthy
as Blaine McDonough
Jon Cryer
as Phil 'Duckie' Dale
James Spader
as Steff McKee
Jim Haynie
as Mr. Donnelly
Bruno Coon
as Talk Back
Gina Gershon
as Girl Friend in Gym Class
Bader Howar
as Sales Girl
Christian Jacobs
as Boy in Record Store
Audre Johnson
as Benny's Mom
Melanie Manos
as Girl at Party
Maggie Roswell
as Mrs. Dietz
Jimmer Podrasky
as The Rave-Up
Tommy Blatnik
as The Rave-Up
Timothy J.
as The Rave-Up
Terry Wilson
as The Rave-Up
Bruno
as Talk Back
Jeffrey Hollie
as Talk Back
Kevin Ricard
as Talk Back
David Sutton
as Talk Back
Kevin Williams
as Talk Back
Rock Deadrick
as Talk Back
Karen Laine
as Girl at Prom
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News & Interviews for Pretty in Pink

Critic Reviews for Pretty in Pink

All Critics (46) | Top Critics (12)

... in the end "Pretty in Pink" is as fraudulent as the junk it's supposed to transcend.

Jan 4, 2018 | Full Review…

As irresistibly sweet as cotton candy.

Feb 27, 2016 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

First-Timer Howard Deutch is a nice surprise too. His precise, unexploitative direction is sympathetic to the awkward pauses in teen talk, to the mopery of first love, to the suicidal bravado of words spoken in heat.

Jun 9, 2014 | Full Review…

These kids have a bumpy ride, but this is one film that identifies with their passions instead of indulging them, giving us a perfect back-seat view of kids out cruising, not for kicks but for a hard-earned sense of pride.

Jun 9, 2014 | Full Review…

It's way too hackneyed for John Hughes. He's already shown us that he knows better.

Jun 9, 2014 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

When Molly Ringwald and Annie Potts are onscreen together, the movie is aglow. See Pretty In Pink or, years from now, you may suffer side effects from missing it.

Jun 9, 2014 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Pretty in Pink

A sweet coming-of-age story with an adorable sense of humor, an awesome soundtrack and some superb performances by Stanton, Cryer and Potts, and if the end may not please you (like it did please me), the sincere way the movie shows the insecurities of youth definitely will.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

In typical John Hughes fashion, Pretty in Pink is nostalgic, beautifully-filmed, touchingly honest, and wonderfully enjoyable.

Matthew Samuel Mirliani
Matthew Samuel Mirliani

Super Reviewer

½

I had moderately high expectations for "Pretty In Pink" because I enjoyed John Hughes's (superior) "Sixteen Candles," and I was already familiar with its parody in "Not Another Teen Movie." I was ultimately disappointed though mainly because Andie's prom dress is a Pepto Bismol atrocity. Just kidding. The poor girl-rich guy love story rang even falser. Blane and Andie's attraction is just googly-eyed faux-chemistry. What is this "something" that he sees in her? (I'm sure we, the audience, see it cuz Molly Ringwald rocks, but there's no scene in the movie that shows her striking his fancy.) What does she see in him? Is he that different from his richie rich friends, or doesn't he still just get by on his high class looks and sophisticated charm? On the date, he is incredibly naive about his friends' anticipated reception, and he does say some unintentionally condescending things that would rub me the wrong way. The class conflict is also slightly incidental and doesn't come across as a problem until the date. We know that Andie is poor, but it's unclear that she pays to attend a rich private high school with students who bully her for her relative penury. I thought it was just for her independent, free-spirited ways. I'm also more than a little perturbed that the parody of Andie and Duckie's friendzoniest of friendzones is almost without exaggeration! Everyone is so totally oblivious! Even after Andie comes home and says, "I'm in love," her dad doesn't automatically assume she's talking about Duckie, who earlier confessed his love for her to Jack. Jon Cryer as Duckie is just charming and devoted as all-get-out, albeit embarrassingly silly and slightly clingy. His tell-off speech is probably the best dramatic work I've seen of Cryer's, which is a shame. That's not to say I necessarily wanted Andie to end up with the friendzoned best friend (because unconditional idolatry bordering on obsession isn't what she wants or needs either), but his prom date savior move and sacrificial all-but-slow-clapping endorsement of Blane's bland non-apology is just too much and too sad.

Alice Shen
Alice Shen

Super Reviewer

Blane: You said you couldn't be with someone who didn't believe in you. Well I believed in you. I just didn't believe in me. I love you... always. "He's crazy about her. She's crazy about him. He's just crazy." I finally got around to watching one of John Hughes' classic high school movies, and I have to say Pretty in Pink lived up to the classic Hughes status. I didn't quite like it as much as The Breakfast Club, but Pretty in Pink is something special in its own right. It has a good, if pretty typical story at the heart of it, but what makes it special is Hughes' brilliant writing and the characters, which are all great. The cast also comes through perfectly and Jon Cryer might have stolen the whole show, with an offbeat, but emotional performance as Duckie. Andie is a poor girl who attends a school that has a lot of rich kids. The rich kids and the poor kids hate each other. When Blane(a rich) starts showing signs of liking Andie, she can't believe it could be true. Then Blane asks her out and then to the prom, she is extremely excited. The only problem is that Blane's friends don't approve because Andie is poor and Andie's friends don't approve because Blane is rich. Well mostly it's just Duckie that doesn't approve, and his love for Andie makes things even more complicated for a girl feeling love for the first time. There's a lot to like about Pretty in Pink. From the performances to the dialogue to the characters; it's a movie that has beauty in just about everything. At points, the movie gets a little too sappy or corny, but for the most part it gets a good majority of the high school scene and the first feelings of love down pretty good. This is one of those movies that a lot of guys don't really care to look into. Pretty in Pink doesn't really get too many guys excited, but this really is worth the time. Hughes was, in a way, a genius, in how he explored and pretty much perfected the high school drama/comedy/romance. This is just another perfect example of that.

Melvin White
Melvin White

Super Reviewer

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