A regular girl, Veronica, tries to survive the social jungle of high school by sticking with the three most popular girls at school who are all called Heather. As she meets a sociopath named JD, her life spirals into a continuous cycle of hate, unintentional murder and indifference, as she exacts revenge on her enemies, also known as her best friends. Written by
Quoted from the American Film Institute: "According to the 23 Mar 1989 [Los Angeles Times], [Daniel] Waters based the script on the high school experiences of his sister and her friends, as well as a chapter about the cultivation of female identity in Simone de Beauvoir's 1949 book, 'The Second Sex.' He also told LAT that he had grown tired of Hollywood's romanticization of suicide, and that he believed most people actually harbor an "ultimate fantasy" of attending their own funeral." See more »
When talking about the Lunchtime Poll question, Heather Chandler tells her friends she had just come up with it in study hall. However, when Veronica asks if it is what Heather Chandler was talking to her on the phone about the night before, Heather says yes. See more »
I can recall only a few times that movies have genuinely shocked me,
not with a plot twist in a mystery or thriller, but with pure
audacious, in-your-face moments. Those moments make an impact. They
don't bruise; they scar. They brand an image or a quote into my memory
that rests there forever. Heathers delivers a handful of these moments
within its first 20 minutes. You can attempt to describe this movie
anyway that you like, be it satirical, provocative, hilarious, wild,
etc. One thing is certain about Heathers, you will not forget it.
Heathers is a disturbingly dark comedy dripping with hyperbolic satire
about high school life. Every character is exaggerated. The kids are
either sadistic or secretly psychotic or both. All the adults are
clueless, so of course they handle each conflict with incompetence. Yet
somehow the plot makes the characters appear by comparison, which is
say that things get pretty crazy.
This drastically sensationalized world of high school (littered with
great quotes) makes Heathers a genre-defying classic.
Boldly exploring the world of teen social life in a way for more daring
and original than "16 Candles" or "The Breakfast Club" (oh, these kids
are more than just their stereotypes? I never knew), Heathers takes us
behind the scenes of the most popular clique in school, called the
Heathers. The three founding members, all named Heather, insist on
referring to each other by first name only which creates some cute
confusion in the opening minutes. The film takes an abrupt dark turn
The leader, Heather Chandler, needs only to utter a few sentences to
reveal herself as one of the most shockingly cruel and timelessly
quotable teen characters in cinema history. So shocking are her lines
that they still drop jaws in 2016. I wouldn't dare spoil the great
quotes from Heather or the ones from Heather or any quotes for that
matter, but suffice it to say that you will never think about mineral
water, brain tumors or chainsaws the same way again.
As we witness the appalling ways of Heather as she mentally mutilates
the less popular, we also observe the apathy with which her actions are
met. Only Veronica seems phased by how her best friend (who she hates)
treats people. Since she's the only sensible character in the movie,
Veronica comes up with the only sensible way to solve the Heather
problem: kill her. "Accidents" ensue leading to a perceived suicide
epidemic throughout the city. In death, the tormentors become martyrs
celebrated for the giving lives they did not actually lead. Despite the
phony praise passed onto the dead, virtually everyone's reactions to
the suicides are laughably deadpan or selfish. Some seek attention by
accepting blame. Others worry only about canceling school. The school's
lower class students notice the glorification of suicide and view it as
their best chance at popularity.
The comical take on murder/suicide is dicey. But viewers should
understand it as an attempt to mock the allure some bestow on suicide.
Even if this bold effort ruffles some feathers, the film presents a
moral statement: all people should be treated with decency.
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