Director: Cameron Crowe
Stars: John Cusack, Ione Sky & James Mahoney
Film #47 of The December Project
'Say Anything...' is the feature film directorial debut of notable filmmaker Cameron Crowe, this is quite an important film in the history of teen romance comedies in the 80's and arrived after a slew of John Hughes films.
A popular teen named Lloyd Dobler falls in love with an overachieving girl named Diane Court. The two start a relationship but variables out of their control threaten its longevity.
My favorite aspect of 'Say Anything...' was that never resorted to artificial optimism, More often than not situations taking place throughout the film felt more real and believable, even more so than a Hughes film for example. Speaking of John Hughes films, they usually felt a little too fantastical, Crowe seems to want to break away from that mold with this film, this film still has a certain air of intelligence which is a testament to Crowe's writing, he has made a career out of creating sympathetic and likeable characters, and here is no different, case in point Lloyd Dobler. Crowe does a good enough job trying to stray away from cliches, which is ironic seeing as this film started a bunch of them.
The film features plenty of humorous moments as well as heartfelt ones. The characters quirkiness and likability are a bonus and make the film worth the investment. There also a number of memorable scenes and quotes throughout the film,like 'she gave me a pen' ,'Are you hear because you need someone, or are you here because you need me' and of course the scene that features John Cusack holding the boombox playing Peter Gabriel's 'In Your Eyes' outside Ione Sky's window, to be honest I always thought this would be the last scene of the film, but was quite surprised when it appears around 77 minutes in to this 100 minute film, and nothing really comes of it, why is the scene so iconic ?
The film definitely has its emotional side too, through the difficulties in the relationship Diane has with Lloyd, as well as her relationship with her father, which is loving but all comes crashing down when her father's tax evasion history comes to light, its all well executed and effective.
The film has a strong cast, John Cusack is fantastic and very supportable and likeable and portrays Lloyd as good hearted person. Ione Sky is also good and is usually very convincing in her role as Diane. James Mahoney is very good as Diane's caring but distraught father, and Lilli Taylor is hilarious as Corey.
'Say Anything...' is definitely in the upper echelon of 80's teen comedies and can rival the likes of 'The Breakfast Club' and 'Sixteen Candles', a heartfelt and hilarious film that is still worth checking out.