American Graffiti

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So on the night before I went away to college I contemplated what DVD I should bring in order to make me look more cultured, and then watched Pride and Prejudice again, because who wouldn’t want to be friends with someone who can quote Jane Austen? Apparently, that was not the way to spend that evening in the 1960’s, but then again Pride and Prejudice wasn’t out yet.

American Graffiti is about a group of teenagers in a small town in California, the night before they leave for college. They spend the entire night driving around (or cruising, as the cool kids called it). The movie follows a group of friends who kind of turn off into their own plot lines. I was amazed at some of the things that happened during the movie, because that shit would not fly today. You have a sister volunteering her twelve year old sister to go driving with a teenage boy she just met, who was just flirting with someone else in the car. Was there no stranger danger in the 1960s? Did the parents not care that their children were driving around until the next morning? I was flabbergasted and extremely jealous of the whole situation (did I mention that a coke only cost like 10 cents?).

I think my favorite part of the movie was the fact that Ronny Howard was in it (and was referred to as Ronny Howard in the opening credits). Apparently he didn’t want to be in the movie because he didn’t want to be typecast as a child star (how does that happen exactly? I’m sure when you’re fifty that kind of stops), but he did it anyways, and thank goodness, he is such an excellent narrator.

And then Harrison Ford was in it! And there is nothing better than a young Harrison Ford (even though he was like 30 at the time). With his car, hot damn

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And all of the girlfriends in the movie were actually really cool, which doesn’t really happen, so I was super excited. I mean Ron Howard’s girlfriend was occasionally slightly over dramatic, especially when she gets into Harrison Ford’s car, but I mean who wouldn’t?

I feel like it’s extremely hard to have a terrible movie made by George Lucas and Francis Ford Coppola. It’s also hard to have a bad movie when all of the characters are using the word “bitchin”, I mean that’s just science. Even though I have been through the whole “night before college” thing, the whole experience in the movie just seemed so foreign to me. I couldn’t imagine getting into a car with stranger, or just driving through town with my friends for an entire night, and I can’t decide whether that is a bad thing or not.

Rating: 4 out of 5 uses of the word “bitchin”

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