Furious movie fan calls for the return of a forgotten and beloved genre
Tiktok star Jax James has taken to Twitter to make an impassioned plea to moviemakers, begging for the return of the quirky teen romantic comedies.
Riffing on Kim Kardashian’s viral “get your fucking ass up and work” video, James lamented that modern cinema is lacking “quirky teen romcoms”, after the sub-genre dominated well into the 2000s.
Teen movies have a long history in Hollywood, reaching their qualitative peak in the 1980s. Some precursors to this heyday include films such as 1955’s Rebel Without a Cause, telling the story of three troubled, rebellious teenagers and their struggles growing up with clueless parents who just don’t understand them.
Another precursor is George Lucas’s American Graffiti, following a teenage group of friends on the night before they are going to leave for college.
One cannot talk about 1980s teen movies without immediately thinking about John Hughes. He is the filmmaker behind such classics as Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and Pretty in Pink. Hughes is credited with dealing with teenagers in an honest and impactful way giving them a much-needed voice, opening up Hollywood to teenage struggles.
More recently, 2004 comedy film Mean Girls, written by Tina Fey, has become somewhat of a pop-culture staple and Greta Gerwig’s 2017 film Lady Bird was even nominated for multiple Academy Awards. Olivia Wilde’s Booksmart is widely underrated for its honest depiction of modern teen life.
As we slowly see the return of the romantic comedy, perhaps this subgenre is ripe for revival as well.