The Breakfast Club Is A Cult Classic Film From The Sixties Essay

The Breakfast Club Is A Cult Classic Film From The Sixties Essay

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The Breakfast Club is a cult classic film from the eighties that centers around five teenagers in high school and their Saturday spent in detention. The movie is completely centered around the social interactions of the five characters and the blooming of their unlikely friendship during their detention. This development is the source of a majority of the plot points, as there is not much action or outside based plot points within the film. Due to the heavy focus on social interaction, various social psychology principles and theories are quite prominent within the film. Stereotyping is at the very heart of the film and several plot points revolve around these social psychology principles, but also aspects such as the social identity theory are important in the film.
Stereotyping is the most prevalent social psychology theme within the film and is at the heart of most of the conflict within the plot. Stereotypes are the beliefs individuals hold about groups of people based off of traits or characteristics that they share. They are based off of the schemas that people have and play a major role in processing the information collected from social interaction and first meetings. The famous opening and closing narration of the movie focuses on the central theme of stereotypes: "You see us as you want to see us.  In the simplest terms.  The most convenient definitions.  You see us as a brain, an athlete, a basket-case, a princess, and a criminal.” Each of these five categories fits the portrayal of one of the characters: Brian Johnson (the brain), Andrew Clark (the athlete), Allison Reynolds (the basket-case), Claire Standish (the princess), and John Bender (the criminal). At the beginning of the film, each of the characters ...


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... in Brian’s famous narration at the beginning of the film he states that they were “brainwashed” due to how they viewed each other before seven that morning. This seems to fit with how society tends to view stereotypes, even though we rely on our social schemas in similar ways without even being totally aware of it. The portrayal of social identity theory is also very effective, despite only being a major point in one scene. It created interesting conflict within the characters, considering that they wanted to be friends but realized that it would prove difficult within the social structure of their school lives. The film is so relatable to so many people because most people have had some point in their lives where they struggle with these issues. Social psychology is at the heart of The Breakfast Club and its success, especially stereotyping and social identity.

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