Here is my personal list, one at a time, of the top ten movie characters ever. However, feel free to agree or offer better choices and argument. SPOILER CAUTION! The content below may give away some of the plot of the film(s) concerned.
#6 FERRIS BUELLER
“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
To say Ferris Bueller was a popular kid at school is a massive understatement, “The sportos, the motorheads, geeks, sluts, bloods, wastoids, dweebies, dickheads – they all adore him. They think he’s a righteous dude.” Superbly played by Matthew Broderick in the 1986 classic ‘Ferris Bueller’s Day Off’ and written and directed by 1980s teen-film guru John Hughes, Ferris Bueller is not just the school kid everyone wants to be, he is the person every adult would like to be too.
Although very popular, Ferris is not conceited, he helps anyone if he can and has a very realistic and mature view on life, showing wisdom well beyond his years, and it is this view on life that leaves him to be frustrated by the mundane irrelevances of High School.
“I do have a test today … It’s on European socialism. I mean, really, what’s the point? I’m not European. I don’t plan on being European. So who gives a crap if they’re socialists? They could be fascist anarchists, it still doesn’t change the fact that I don’t own a car.”
“Not that I condone fascism, or any -ism for that matter. -Ism’s in my opinion are not good. A person should not believe in an -ism, he should believe in himself. I quote John Lennon, “I don’t believe in Beatles, I just believe in me.” Good point there. After all, he was the walrus. I could be the walrus. I’d still have to bum rides off people.”
Ferris decides that he wants to take the day off with his best and highly uptight friend Cameron (played by Alan Ruck) and his gorgeous girlfriend Sloane (Mia Sara). However, to do this he has to fake being ill to his parents and cover the fact with his school that he has already been ill 9 times this year. Ferris isn’t just a normal film character; he actually talks the audience as well, giving them advice on how to fake out the parents.
“The key to faking out the parents is the clammy hands. It’s a good non-specific symptom; I’m a big believer in it. A lot of people will tell you that a good phony fever is a dead lock, but, uh… you get a nervous mother, you could wind up in a doctor’s office. That’s worse than school. You fake a stomach cramp, and when you’re bent over, moaning and wailing, you lick your palms. It’s a little childish and stupid, but then, so is high school.”
Ferris also wants to persuade his neurotic friend Cameron Fry to join him because he is a good friend and wants him to lighten up. “Pardon my French, but Cameron is so uptight that if you stuck a lump of coal up his ass, in two weeks you’d have a diamond”. Cameron also has a car, which is crucial to the Day Off, but they decide to go and have a look at his father’s pride and joy in the garage:
Cameron: The 1961 Ferrari 250GT California. Less than a hundred were made. My father spent three years restoring this car. It is his love, it is his passion.
Ferris: It is his fault he didn’t lock the garage.
Although raising the suspicions of Prinicpal Ed Rooney (Jeffrey Jones), Sloane, Cameron and Ferris head into Chicago central in the “ so choice” Ferrari 250GT California fully intent on having a day of fun. They succeed. Ferris blags them into posh restaurant, pretending to be Abe Froeman, the Sausage ‘King of Chicago’, they go up the Sears Tower (I think?) to look down over the city, go to a baseball game at Wrigley Field, look round a museum and then, finally, to convince a slightly morose Cameron who claims he’s not seen anything good that day, Ferris disappears and then the next they see him he is on a Parade Float:
“Ladies and gentlemen, you are such a wonderful crowd, we’d like to play a little tune for you. It’s one of my personal favorites and I’d like to dedicate it to a young man who doesn’t think he’s seen anything good today – Cameron Fry, this one’s for you.”
HE sings ‘Danke Schoen’ and then ‘Twist and Shout’. Cameron has to concede and accept he has had a great day. If that wasn’t enough, Sloane accepts his wedding proposal, he manages to win over his sister (one of the few people who are not his fan as she resents his popularity and fortune) who prevents him from being caught being truant by Principal Rooney.
Ferris Bueller is someone who can make anything happen, who teaches us that you should ignore convention and chase after your dream. If you’re positive and optimistic, good things can come your way.
“You’re still here? It’s over! “