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A 1985 Speculative Fiction comedy directed by John Hughes, starring Brat Packer Anthony Michael Hall and supermodel Kelly LeBrock, and featuring Bill Paxton and Robert Downey Jr. A typical-for-its-time (if somewhat tame) Wish Fulfillment teen-sex comedy with a sci-fi twist: When a pair of Hollywood Nerds can't get girls on their own, they decide to build themselves the perfect woman in an effort to become popular.
Wyatt and Gary are typical Nerds (if unattractive only by Hughes' standards) who are bullied at school. At home, Wyatt's Jerk Jock older brother Chet makes their lives just as uncomfortable. The guys are desperate for female attention. Unable to work up the nerve to actually talk to real girls, the pair use Wyatt's Magical Computer to simulate a woman. However, a hack into a government mainframe and a freak thunderstorm all come together and bring the woman simulation to real life.
This woman, whom the boys name "Lisa", turns out to be a Magical Girl, able to create "anything [she] want[s]". What she wants, in the end, is to help the boys get girlfriends. To this end she takes them to a blues bar to befriend the clientele (to break them out of their shells); teaches them to kiss (at least, teaches Wyatt); and throws a big raving party at Wyatt's house (to show them that they can be popular, or at least liked). When, however, the boys hide from their own party, Lisa creates a distraction: a home invasion by a biker gang to threaten the guys' dream girls, forcing them to come to the rescue and scare the thugs off. She also stands up to Chet, showing him what it's like to be on the receiving end of a bully's attention.
Adapted into a television series in the early 90s.
This film provides examples of the following tropes:
- Adaptation Expansion: The comic book story the film was based on was produced in the early 1950s, with the film significantly updating and expanding the premise for the home computer age.
- An Aesop: "When are you gonna learn that people will like you for who you are, and not for what you can give them?"
- Subverted an instant later with:
Lisa: Well, in your race for power and glory, you forgot one small detail.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Lisa may be hot, but beware that she is the hi-tech eqivalent of a Djinn (and djinn are usually not very nice) and will fuck your day. Chet learned this the hard and humiliating way.
- But Now I Must Go
- Caught with Your Pants Down
- Chekhov's Gun: Literally, Lisa's squirt gun (see Remonstrating, below)
- Cliché Storm
- Dawson Casting: Suzanne Snyder (Deb) was 22 while filming her role as a high school student.
- Largely averted, however, with the rest of the main cast. Judie Aronson (Hilly) was 20. Robert Downey, Jr. (Ian) was 19. Robert Rusler (Max) turned 19 during filming. Averted most of all with Gary and Wyatt: Anthony Michael-Hall was 16 while Ilan Mitchell-Smith was only 15.
- Lampshaded in-Univese when Gary introduces Lisa to his parents and tries to pass her off as a high school exchange student from Europe. Kelly LeBrock was 24 at the time of filming. Gary's parents aren't quite buying it.
Gary's Dad: Do you go to Gary's school??
- The Eighties
- Eighties Hair: Lisa, big time.
- Fanservice Extras: The girl in the upside down bathroom who gives a gratuitous Panty Shot is one. The other is the girl playing the piano, who gets stripped down to her panties before being sucked up and out the chimney. The "Girl Playing Piano" is Kym Malin, who is also Playboy's Playmate of the Month for May 1982.
- The Freelance Shame Squad: How funny is it when two kids get a Slurpee dumped on their heads? To ask the shoppers in that mall, there's absolutely nothing funnier, and they make sure Gary and Wyatt know that.
- Hey, It's That Guy!: Bill "Aliens" Paxton as Chet, Robert Downey Jr. as a school bully, and Anthony Michael Hall as one of the leads.
- Counts doubly for Chet, as Paxton has stated on record that Aliens' Hudson effectively is Chet, and that he was hired specifically to play the same character in his day job.
- Max later went on to become a Starfury fighter pilot on Babylon 5.
- The leader of the killer mutant biker gang (Vernon Wells) is Wez from The Road Warrior!
- The bald mutant biker who'd hate to lose his teaching job is Pluto from The Hills Have Eyes. Actor Michael Berryman has been in more than fifty films since the 1970s.
- The female biker (Jennifer Balgobin) became Dr. Lillian Hobbes on Babylon 5.
- Look for a very young David Hodges (a 19-year-old Wallace Langham), who tells Lisa that his name is Art and shortly thereafter gets zapped into a TV set.
- Hollywood Hacking, complete with Extreme Graphical Representation.
- Hollywood Nerds
- Informed Attractiveness: Lisa is played by a fairly attractive actress; but her then incredibly fashionable hair, makeup and style of dress has aged very badly -- which, at least for some modern viewers, makes it harder to accept her as the sex goddess everyone in the film seems to think she is.
- Jerk Jock: Chet.
- Magical Girl: Lisa, born of a Magical Computer.
- Instant AI, Just Add Water and/or lightning. And don't forget to hook up the doll. Pershing missiles happen when you don't hook up the doll.
- Magical Girlfriend: What Gary and Wyatt wanted... but not quite so much what they got.
- A Man Is Always Eager: At least one of the main guys.
- Modesty Bedsheet: Gary, Wyatt, and Lisa take a shower together, and the boys keep their jeans and tennis shoes on.
- No Hugging, No Kissing: Ok, so you just created a Magical Girlfriend who looks like Kelly LeBrock and you don't have sex with her? Please.
- Reality Warper: Lisa. It's really the only explanation for what she's capable of.
- Remonstrating with a Gun: Gary at the party, terrifying the guests in the process.
Wyatt: "Where did you get that gun?"
- Train Escape (version 1): Gary evades a police pursuit in this manner.
- Weird Science: Not the Trope Namer. This film was named after the genre, not the other way around. If anything, Weird Science is the Film Namer.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: The end of the movie shows most of the damage from the party repairing itself, but a couple of questions remain:
- Wild Teen Party: Most of the middle of the movie.