Risky Business

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Director: Paul Brickman
Writer: Paul Brickman
Producers: Jon Avnet, Steve Tisch
Tom Cruise as Joel Goodson
Rebecca DeMornay as Lana
Rich kid preparing for College suddenly finds himself all alone in the house as his parents leave for a trip. When one of his friends suggests that he loosen up, he turns that piece of advice into a money-making scheme, featuring escort call girls and his friends trading favors for one another, in a wild night of drinks, sex and debauchery.
Tom Cruise’s breakthrough feature accentuates the rebellion of youth intertwined with the trepidation of a future unknown. A darker, sexier FERRIS BUELLER’S DAY OFF, if you will. And if you won’t, you could see this film as an interesting character study of a kid torn between his tendencies to discover the wild side of life before adult responsibilities and his desire to satisfy his parents. I liked it mostly on nostalgic grounds with Cruise coming across as the perfect boy next door with that certain twinkle in his eye, and sunglasses that were just waaaay too big for his face. Having said that, Ray-Ban isn’t complaining since this film’s success literally quadrupled their sales the next year. This film also features the classic scene of Cruise dancing around in his white briefs and preppy shirt to the tune of “Old Time Rock n’ Roll”.

Overall, it was unique enough to keep me interested throughout, despite the tepid romance scenes between Cruise and DeMornay and the farfetched nature of some of its scenarios. If you like Cruise, you should see this film at least one, or if you’re also in the midst of interrogating your life decisions right before College. All in all, despite its dated feel, this film has an interesting premise, great style and good acting.

(c) 2021 Berge Garabedian

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