John Hughes in five paragraphs

“Few filmmakers define an era, a genre and a place like John Hughes did with his ’80s comedies often set on Chicago’s North Shore.

He may not have been a critic’s darling, but his name became synonymous with a brand of comedy in which young, rebellious, yet good-at-heart characters battle an establishment that seemed to rankle the filmmaker as well. Films such as “The Breakfast Club,” “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” and “Home Alone” took on an iconic status, all while his productions revitalized the local film industry and launched scores of careers.”Mark Caro, Chicago Tribune

That about says it all. But one more thing:

John Hughes created adventure. Joss Whedon was left only with metaphorical vampires and monsters to explain high school, as Hughes had already had his way with the setting several times over. He created fantasy adventures where a young man could fool an entire town, then cut a broad swath through one of the largest cities in America, leading a literal parade. He created romantic adventures born in 50’s mythic Americana where the boy from the wrong side of the tracks gets the most popular girl in school to fall for him, just before he realizes he’s in love with his best friend. And he created wartime adventures, where a ragtag group of soldiers with few common bonds unite against more than a few common enemies to escape a prison of society’s making. I could go on but…

In short, John Hughes created superheroes. For someone like me who spent his childhood idolizing comic book heroes, the heroes of Hughes’s films were there to hand me the baton as I entered the second leg of life’s race, better known as adolescence. And they made it that much easier to sprint my way through adulthood, where reuniting with your family at the end of the day can be as heroic as leaping a tall building in a single bound.

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