Weird Science (film)

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This article is about the film. For the TV show based on the film, see Weird Science (TV series). For other uses, see Weird Science (disambiguation).
Weird Science
Movie poster for Weird Science (1985).jpg
Theatrical release poster by Tom Jung
Directed by John Hughes
Produced by Joel Silver
Written by John Hughes
Based on Weird Science 
by EC Comics
Starring Anthony Michael Hall
Ilan Mitchell-Smith
Kelly LeBrock
Bill Paxton
Robert Downey, Jr.
Music by Ira Newborn
Jimmy Iovine
Cinematography Matthew F. Leonetti
Edited by Chris Lebenzon
Mark Warner
Production
company
Distributed by Universal Pictures
Release dates
  • August 2, 1985 (1985-08-02)
Running time
94 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $38,934,048

Weird Science is a 1985 American teen sci-fi comedy film written and directed by John Hughes and starring Anthony Michael Hall, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, and Kelly LeBrock. The film's producer, Joel Silver, acquired film rights to the pre-Comics Code Authority 1950s EC Comics magazine of the same name, from which the plot is developed as an expansion and modernization of the basic premise in Al Feldstein's story "Made of the Future" in the fifth issue.[citation needed] The title song was written and performed by American new wave band Oingo Boingo.

As of 2013, a remake of Weird Science is currently in development at Universal Studios, with Joel Silver returning as producer and Michael Bacall also returning as screenwriter.[1]

Plot[edit]

Shermer, Illinois, is a fictitious suburb of Chicago. There, nerdy social outcasts Gary Wallace and Wyatt Donelly are publicly humiliated by Ian and Max after they are seen swooning over two girls whom happen to be their girlfriends. Dejected and disappointed at their direction in life and wanting more, Gary convinces the uptight Wyatt that they need a boost of popularity in order to get their crushes; Hilly and Deb, away from Ian and Max. Alone for the weekend with Wyatt's parents gone, Gary is inspired by the 1931 classic Frankenstein to create a virtual girl using Wyatt's computer; infusing her with everything they can concieve to make the perfect dream girl. After hooking electrodes to a doll and hacking into a government computer system for more power; a power surge creates Lisa, a beautiful and intelligent woman with seemingly endless powers. Promptly she conjures up a Cadillac convertible to take the boys out to a bar, using her powers to manipulate people into believing Gary and Wyatt are of age. The boys come up with the name Lisa, based upon a failed romantic experience of Gary's that ended with Lisa kicking him in the testicles.

They return home drunk and happen upon Chet; Wyatt's older brother, who extorts money from him to buy his silence. Lisa agrees to keep herself hidden from him, but realizes that Gary and Wyatt, while extremely sweet are very uptight and need to unwind. After a humiliating experience at the mall where Max and Ian pour Slushies on Gary and Wyatt in front of a crowd of people, Lisa tells them about a party at Wyatt's house, (which Wyatt had no prior knowledge of) before driving off in a Porsche 928 she conjured for Gary to spite them. Despite Wyatt's protests, Lisa insists that the party happen anyway in order to loosen the boys up. She goes to meet Gary's parents Al and Lucy, who to Gary's embarrassment are shocked and dismayed at the things she says and her frank manner. After she pulls a gun on them (later revealed to Gary to be a water pistol), she alters their memories so that Lucy forgets about the conflict, and Al forgets that they've had a son altogether. Back at the Donelly house, the party has spun out of control while Gary and Wyatt take refuge in the bathroom where they resolve to have a good time, despite having embarrassed themselves in front of Deb and Hilly. Meanwhile, Wyatt's grandparents arrive and confront Lisa about the party. She freezes them and puts them in a cupboard while Ian and Max convince Gary and Wyatt to recreate the events that created Lisa which leads to her frustration over the misuse of the magic to impress their tormentors and the fact that they forgot to connect a doll inadvertently creates a Pershing medium-range ballistic missile that appears in the floor of their bedroom. Lisa resolves that the boys need a challenge to boost their confidence and has a gang of mutant bikers invade the party, causing chaos and sending the boys running.

The bikers take Deb and Hilly hostage, and Wyatt and Gary decide they need to save them. They confront the bikers with a new boost of confidence (and Lisa's water pistol) to force them to back down. After they leave, Gary accidentally fires the gun, which is now real, and their bravery makes Deb and Hilly fall in love with them. The next morning, Chet uncovers the disarray that the house is in; the missile protruding through the floor joists and carpet of the bedroom, the kitchen being turned entirely blue, and his catatonic grandparents in the cupboard before confronting Wyatt and Gary. Lisa tells the boys to escort the girls home while she talks to Chet alone. Gary narrowly escapes being pulled over by the police in a conjured Ferarri, while Wyatt proclaims his love for Deb before being sprayed by her parent's lawn sprinklers, and both girls reciprocate their feelings to the boys. Returning home, they discover Chet, now transformed into a talking pile of feces, who apologizes to Wyatt for his behavior. Lisa assures them that Chet will return to normal, and realizing that her work is done and that they don't need her anymore... she kisses both Gary and Wyatt before dematerializing and vanishing. As she is leaving all of the disarray is magically transformed back to normal, the missile disappears, the home is restored to it's original fastidious state and Chet returns to normal just as Wyatt's parents return home, unaware anything odd has happened at all.

Sometime later, somewhere in America... a gym class of sweaty, pimply adolescent boys waiting for gym-class to begin is met by a beautifully fit coach in spandex. It is revealed to be Lisa who tells the class to "Drop and give me twenty." causing all the boys in the class to faint and collapse. She turns to the camera and smiles knowingly.

Cast[edit]

Reception[edit]

The film received a mixed response from critics. Based on 27 reviews collected by the film review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, 56% of critics gave Weird Science a positive review, with an average rating of 5.6/10. The consensus states: "Hardly in the same league as John Hughes' other teen movies, the resolutely goofy Weird Science nonetheless gets some laughs via its ridiculous premise and enjoyable performances".[2] The film was successful at the box office with a gross of $23,834,048 in North America and $15,100,000 in other territories, totaling $38,934,048 worldwide.[3]

TV series[edit]

A television show based on the film ran from 1994 to 1998 over 88 episodes. Following the same basic plot as the film, the series starred Vanessa Angel as Lisa, Michael Manasseri as Wyatt, John Mallory Asher as Gary, and Lee Tergesen as Chet.

Soundtrack[edit]

The film's theme song, "Weird Science," was performed by Oingo Boingo and written by the band's frontman Danny Elfman.

  1. "Weird Science" – Oingo Boingo
  2. "Turn It On" – Kim Wilde
  3. "Deep in the Jungle" – Wall of Voodoo
  4. "Tubular Bells" – Mike Oldfield
  5. "Tesla Girls" – Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark
  6. "Private Joy" – Cheyne
  7. "Wanted Man" – Ratt
  8. "Don't Worry Baby" – Los Lobos
  9. "Forever" – Taxxi
  10. "Method to My Madness" – The Lords of the New Church
  11. "Eighties" – Killing Joke
  12. "Why Don't Pretty Girls Look at Me" – Wild Men of Wonga
  13. "Nervous and Shakey" – The Del Fuegos
  14. "The Circle" – Max Carl
  15. "Tenderness" – General Public
  16. "Do Not Disturb (Knock Knock)" – The Broken Homes
  17. "Oh, Pretty Woman" – Van Halen

Remake[edit]

As of 2013, Universal Studios is planning to make a Weird Science remake with original Weird Science producer Joel Silver returning to produce the film and with screenwriter Michael Bacall writing the film. This film will attempt to distinguish itself from the original Weird Science film by being redone as an edgier comedy in line with 21 Jump Street and The Hangover, which were R-rated; the studio says the rating for this Weird Science remake is not certain at this stage of the movie's development.[1]

References[edit]

External links[edit]