My Bodyguard is a simply awesome flick, one of the best teen films of the eighties.
Wait, that’s a challenging statement. Let me offer up some context.
Now there’s no doubt that John Hughes RULED the eighties when it came to films for teens, no argument there – he went on a run that began with 1983’s SIXTEEN CANDLES and ended, for my money, with SOME KIND OF WONDERFUL (already covered earlier on this column) in 1987 – he also made some cool movies for adults (PLANES, TRAINS AND AUTOMOBILES) and for the whole family (HOME ALONE) but his five year run of teen movies in the eighties still reverberates throughout our culture today.
No argument. Hughes was the king. Hughes was the man.
But before John Hughes, there was My Bodyguard, which did Hughes before Hughes actually did Hughes, and with a heavier dose of realism to boot. Set in Chicago, like many a Hughes flick, featuring a bunch of young, talented actors (Chris Makepeace, Matt Dillon, Adam Baldwin and including a very young Joan Cusack, who would later appear in SIXTEEN CANDLES) who don’t seem to be acting but just seem to be smart, flip and tragic, this is a must see film for anyone who loves THE BREAKFAST CLUB.
The story of My Bodyguard is simple. A rich kid (Makepeace) is transfered to a rough public school in Chicago and a gang of young bullies immediately start taxing his ass (led by Dillon, fucking awesome as a mean kid, and believable too) as they do all the weaker children.
He can’t go to his father (Martin Mull, also great) and being a smart kid, he figures out a method to prevail. He hires the one kid in school, a big border-line nut-job, that everyone is afraid of (Baldwin, very good) to be his bodyguard.
It works at first, and the two kids, the rich kid and the delinquent, begin to get to know each other.
Then it gets complicated.
I don’t want to spoil it, but the ending is especially satisfying, and better than most movies.
Check out My Bodyguard today.