Ferris Bueller's Day Off

Ferris Bueller's Day Off

Synopsis of Movie

"The key to faking out the parents is the clammy hands. It's a good non-specific symptom. A lot of people will tell you that a phony fever is a dead lock, but if you get a nervous mother, you could land in the doctor's office. That's worse than school. What you do is, you fake a stomach cramp, and when you're bent over, moaning and wailing, you lick your palms. It's a little childish and stupid, but then, so is high school."

Questions about ditching school? About getting out of trouble? About maintaining your sense of sanity and soul during the trials and tribulations of the average high school experience? Take a deep breath and a number...Dr. Ferris is now in session. Part armchair philosopher, part conniver and politician, part loving friend and boyfriend, and part thorn in the side to older sisters and school administrators, Ferris can talk most anyone into doing most anything, and even more impressive, he can make you love him while he’s twisting your arm.

This 1986 John Hughes movie doesn’t have the romance of others in the Hughes oeuvre (i.e. Sixteen Candles, Some Kind of Wonderful), but it has comedy in spades. There’s nary a Gen-X-er who hasn’t had a go at the monotone Economics Teacher’s (played by the inimitable Mr. Ben Stein) “Bueller?...Bueller?” line. It’s a classic scene, just as Ferris is a classic teen icon.

Since any day is a fine day to skip class in Ferris-dom, and certainly his uptight friend Cameron could use a little sun in his face—if only to burn off the pained grimace created by his priorities-out-whack father. So Ferris rolls up his sleeves. Using his prodigious thespian talents, he fakes illness with concerned parents Tom and Katie Bueller, who lovingly tuck him in and wish him a speedy recovery. Next, using his well-honed talents of persuasion, Ferris convinces Cameron that today’s the day regular old school should take a back seat—and that back seat, incidentally, should be in the back of Cameron’s dad’s beloved 1961 Ferrari. And finally, with his voice modulation talents, Ferris gets his school's administration to let Sloan out for the day, due to a supposed relative’s death. All systems go. Destination: downtown Chicago.

On today's agenda are the Sears Tower, a German pride parade with plenty of floats and lederhosen, the Art Institute, the Board of Trade, Wrigley Field, and a fancy lunch where Ferris snags a reservation by pretending he’s Chi Town’s “King of Sausages”. A day off doesn't get any better than this. Sure, our hero has a few adversaries…anybody who beats the system this well is bound to. School administrator Ed Rooney tries to foil his savvy ditching nemesis at every turn; Ferris’ older and chronically cross sister wants him to pay for his trespasses once and for all. But neither stands a chance.

By the time the ditching trio motors back to their suburban homes, each is changed and edified for having had the experience of the day off. Not to condone rule breakage, surely…but in the movies, apparently profound enlightenment can be yours if you skip school every once in a while.

A TV spin-off called Ferris Bueller reared its head in 1990, with Jennifer Aniston, interestingly, playing the title character’s not-so-friendly sister Jeanie.

Movie Release History

1986 - Ferris Bueller's Day Off

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Ferris Bueller Matthew Broderick Cameron Frye Alan Ruck
Sloane Peterson Mia Sara Dean Edward 'Ed' R. Rooney Jeffrey Jones
Jean 'Jeanie' Bueller Jennifer Grey Katie Bueller Cindy Pickett
Tom Bueller Lyman Ward Grace, School Secretary Edie McClurg
Boy in Police Station Charlie Sheen Economics Teacher Ben Stein
English Teacher Del Close Florence Sparrow, RN Virginia Capers
A1-EZ OK Park Attendant Richard Edson Attendant's Co-Pilot Larry Flash Jenkins
Simone Adamlee Kristy Swanson Economics Student Lisa Bellard
Economics Student Max Perlich Economics Student Scott Coffey
Shermerite Eric Saiet Shermerite Jason Alderman
Shermerite Joey Garfield Shermerite Kristin Graziano
Shermerite Bridgett Baron Shermerite Anne Ryan
Shermerite Eric Edidin Shermerite Brendan Baber
Shermerite Tiffany Chance Chez Quis Maitre'd Jonathan Schmock
Men's Room Attendant Tom Spratley Businessman Dave Silvestri
Girl in Pizza Joint Debra Montague Pizza Man Joey D. Vieira
Flower Delivery Man Louie Anderson Singing Nurse Stephanie Blake
Balloon Man Robert McKibbon Pumpkin Head Paul Manzanero
Girl on Trampoline Miranda Whittle Detective Steven Lim Robert Kim
Politician at Parade Dick Sollenberger Minister at Parade Bob Parkinson
Minister at Parade Richard Rohrbough Gym Teacher Edward Le Beau
Girl on Bus Polly Noonan Bus Driver Dee Dee Rescher
Economics Student Katie Barberi TV Broadcaster Harry Caray
Guy running between cabs John Hughes TV Broadcaster Steve Stone

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