Sixteen Candles (1984)

Sixteen Candles (1984)

Taglines: When you’re just sixteen anything can happen!

Samantha’s life is going downhill fast. The sixteen-year-old has a crush on the most popular boy in school, and the geekiest boy in school has a crush on her. Her sister’s getting married, and with all the excitement the rest of her family forgets her birthday! Add all this to a pair of horrendously embarrassing grandparents, a foreign exchange student named Long Duk Dong, and we have the makings of a hilarious journey into young womanhood.

Sixteen Candles is a 1984 American coming of age comedy film starring Molly Ringwald, Anthony Michael Hall, Justin Henry, Michael Schoeffling, Haviland Morris, Carlin Glynn, Blanche Baker and Liane Curtis. It was written and directed by John Hughes.

About the Story

High school sophomore Samantha “Sam” Baker (Molly Ringwald) struggles to get through the day on her 16th birthday, which her entire family has forgotten about because her older sister, Ginny (Blanche Baker), is getting married the next day. She is also plagued by infatuation with a popular and attractive senior, Jake Ryan (Michael Schoeffling).

Sixteen Candles (1984)

At school she fares no better when she finds out that a completed “sex quiz”, which she tried to surreptitiously slip to her friend Randy (Liane Curtis), never reached her friend Randy and, unbeknownst to either of them, was picked up by Jake. Sam panics because the quiz contains sensitive information, such as she is a virgin and is saving herself for Jake.

She has a whole new set of problems when she arrives home to discover all four of her grandparents are staying at the Baker home during the wedding. One set of grandparents has brought along a bizarre foreign exchange student, Long Duk Dong (Gedde Watanabe). The grandparents force Sam to take him along to her school’s senior dance that night and, to Sam’s amazement, it takes “The Donger” only five minutes to find an unlikely girlfriend—the tall, large-breasted jock, Marlene (Deborah Pollack), nicknamed “Lumberjack”. They are found slow dancing in the gym.

A subplot involves a geeky freshman (Anthony Michael Hall) who tries to win a bet with his friends by continually (and unsuccessfully) trying to bed his love interest, Sam. The character is referred to on several occasions in the film as either “Ted” or “Farmer Ted”, but is credited simply as “the Geek”. On the way home on the school bus, Sam blows him off by saying, “Go to hell.”

Sixteen Candles Movie Poster (1984)

Sixteen Candles (1984)

Directed by: John Hughes
Starring: Molly Ringwald, Anthony Michael Hall, Justin Henry, Michael Schoeffling, Haviland Morris, Carlin Glynn, Blanche Baker, Liane Curtis
Screenplay by: John Hughes
Production Design by: John W. Corso
Cinematography by: Bobby Byrne
Film Editing by: Edward Warschilka
Set Decoration by: Jennifer Polito
Music by: Ira Newborn
Distributed by: Universal Pictures
Release Date: May 4, 1984