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Sunday 15 January 2012

Burl reviews For Keeps! (1988)

Hi, Burl here to review a forgotten picture from the 80s! Ha ha, if most of the people have forgotten that Blue City ever existed, then all of the people have forgotten about For Keeps! But I haven’t forgotten about it, because I actually watched them shoot a little bit of this movie way back when, when it was called Maybe Baby! I always wondered how it turned out, and so finally the other day I gave it a look!
Ha ha! Well, Molly Ringwald’s in the picture, and I guess this was the movie she made after falling out with John Hughes, her old pal who put her in so many of those teen 80s movies! Maybe he wanted her for She’s Having A Baby, but she said no, I’d rather do this other movie about someone having a baby! So off she went! She plays a Kenosha, Wisconsin-based high school girl who has a boyfriend named Stan Beefteque, and she and Stan make sweet love one day and we, the audience, get the whole view of what’s going on biologically within them! The scene reminded me of a similar one in the movie Enter the Void, and any of you who have seen that picture will know what I’m talking about!
Molly and Stan have all sorts of post-high school plans! She’s going to Madison to become a journalist and he, an accomplished designer of novelty tents, has an application in to the architecture department at Cal Tech! But of course as soon as they learn there’s a baby on the way, they consider all these plans scuppered! And of course they have to deal with their parents! Stan ends up becoming estranged from his, while Molly’s single mom, unlucky in love herself and embittered, gives unwise counsel!
The couple move into a coldwater flat and have the baby, and from there their lives become harrowing! I had no idea how thickly this movie laid on the drama, but there seems to be shouting in every scene, and after Stan becomes a sullen and shirtless beer-guzzling young husband, roiling with anger inside because he was accepted to Cal Tech but turned them down, it looks like that’s it for the relationship! But wait a minute – is that a happy ending lurking in the wings? No, it’s a somewhat confusingly ambivalent one that appears to believe it’s a happy ending!
I can’t say this movie is any sort of lost classic! It’s from the director of Rocky and The Karate Kid and Joe, and in a way it’s a sort of mixture of all those movies, with a little bit of Guess What We Learned In School Today mixed in! As I say, there’s an awful lot of shouting, and while I’d previously wondered what happened to the guy who played Stan Beefteque, who was a functionally personable and good looking actor, I realize now that he must have blown out his voice on this picture and been unable to star in movies thereafter! Does he consider For Keeps his legacy project? If so, I’m glad at least that I watched it for that reason!
I guess this is an attempt to deal with teen pregnancy in a semi-realistic way, but it’s not much more realistic than a John Hughes movie when you get down to it! And on top of that it’s not really ol’ Burl’s type of picture – I just watched it because I remember when they were making it! I guess I give it one and a half invisible bathroom walls! Ha ha!

1 comment:

  1. I hate that Molly cuts her hair all short in this movie. The long hair was nice ;_;