Archives for posts with tag: Elizabeth Daily

Improv comic Paul Reubens spent several years honing a character called Pee Wee Herman, a man-child in a too-tight glen plaid suit. He appeared on Letterman, developed a cult following and was eventually able to parlay the character into a feature-length film that has also become a cult classic. “Pee Wee’s Big Adventure” (1985) is an oddball comedy in which Pee Wee engages in elaborate acts of whimsy that eventually pirouette toward punchlines. The jokes are esoteric but the talent behind the scenes (Tim Burton, Danny Elfman, Phil Hartman) somehow keeps you caring about one dude’s search for his bicycle.

I went into “Valley Girl” (1983) thinking it was going to be a broader comedy about, well, San Fernando Valley girls (actually, “Clueless” comes closer to that space 12 years later). This is more of a by-the-book teen romance featuring class conflict between Hollywood punk hunk Nicolas Cage and suburban sweetheart Deborah Foreman (who, at 21, looked too old to be playing a high school junior). That doesn’t make it a bad movie, but the better part is its visual love letter to the neon, music and fashion of early 1980s Los Angeles. Looking back, it’s a pretty-in-pink time capsule.