Ringwald stars as Andie Walsh, a high school social outcast with her own pink-heavy sense of fashion. Her father (Harry Dean Stanton) can't hold a job and still pines for Andie's mother, who walked out on the family three years earlier. Still, he obviously cares deeply for his daughter, even though she plays the role of parent more than him. Andie's best friend is the outrageous Duckie (Jon Cryer), who harbors a very obvious secret: he's in love with Andie--and not in a brotherly way.
|Andrew McCarthy also co-starred with|
Molly Ringwald in Fresh Horses (1988).
Pretty in Pink was the first of the "trilogy" to be directed by someone other than John Hughes (Howard Deutch made his directorial debut). Still, Hughes' fingerprints are all over the film. Despite a couple of awkward scenes (e.g., Ringwald yelling at McCarthy), the dialogue sounds mostly natural. Screenwriter Hughes is at his best when capturing the back-and-forth exchanges between two people--whether it's Andie and her father, Andie and Duckie, or Andie and her friend/surrogate mother Iona (a very effective Annie Potts).
|Jon Cryer as Duckie.|
(Spoiler alert! You may want to stop reading here if you've never seen Pretty in Pink).
|Downey, Jr. might have been Duckie.|
I think Pretty in Pink is the least effective of the three Hughes-Ringwald collaborations. It lacks the sweetness of Sixteen Candles and the wit of The Breakfast Club. Still, one can't underestimate its influence on later teen pictures like She's All That (1999) and 10 Things I Hate About You (1999).
|Stolz in Some Kind of Wonderful.|