Thursday, February 7, 2013
BLAST FROM THE PAST: NOSTALGIA REVIEWS: SECRET ADMIERER (1985)
On the last day before summer vacations Michael receives a glowing, but anonymous, love-letter. He suspects, or better: hopes, it's from Deborah, the girl he's after since a while, but who dates college students only. However she shows him a cold shoulder again. So his and her best friend Toni advises him to write her an anonymous letter in return. However these letters get in the wrong hands and cause lots of confusion in their families, until it's revealed, who wrote which letter to whom.
This is a nostalgic good ol’ review. I remember when I was young I used to watch this over and over on video and cable. I initially only watched this for 2 reasons. I saw it reviewed on Siskel & Ebert and got confused about the film. Getting it Confused with THE LEGEND OF BILLIE JEAN. I never knew which was which and confused at to what the story was about. I did have a crush on Helen Slater at the time, and 2 Corey Haim was in it. I was a Corey Haim fan at a young age.
When I fist saw this I loved the teenage stuff thinking this is what I had to look forward to, but hated the scenes dealing with the adults. Viewing it over the years I still like the film. As the plot plays like a sitcomish series of situations and confusion.
The film also introduced me to Fred Ward as an actor. Cliff De Young also but Fred ward made more of an impact as his grizzled character was the only one of the adult characters to make an impact. This was a far cry for Mr. De Young who I remember as the father in FLIGHT OF THE NAVIGATOR and the henchman in FX
The film is more of a sex farce, but with it’s darkness and shading makes the film deem sleazy. Not that it isn’t, but it gives off a more sleazy vibe. It is quite humorous as we watch the damage this one letter causes. It causes everyone to act on their secret desires. Some find success because of it. Some don’t. again it plays on the fantasy of getting the dream girl and the rude awakening of reality you have to deal with afterwards. It has examples of the classic comedy as this note switches hands and causes various trouble. It seems more sophisticated when it comes to the adults and the damage it can do. Only to cop out of the problems it caused once the truth is revealed. They only have a fraction of the movie. It mostly deals with the teenagers as they are more interesting and the film obviously cares more about them. While a lot of the action involves and revolves around them.
This was in the midst of when C. Thomas Howell was a bankable teen star. He continues to be not a bad actor. Kind of limited. Though I think it’s hard at times to go from being the star back to the ranks of supporting. He has had some decent roles in the years but also some leads unfortunately the movies were horrible. Kelly Preston is nude more in this film, in sex scenes Not as much as MISCHIEF. These feel more realistic. Again she is typecast as the bitch character. Though with a killer 80’s wardrobe. Which is one of the joys of this film. it's funny to see her now but remember her run of being topless and nude in plenty of these teen films of the 80's and she seemed like a upbeat willing participant. She will always be well remembered by me.
Not as well made. As I remember, but then again I wasn’t exactly looking for quality when I first saw the film. Watching and remembering what was cool back then is enjoyable.
Seeing Lori Loughlin on screen is also great. Though at the time I always got her and phoebe Cates confused. I didn’t pay attention to credits much back then. I remember her from many films she was in back then. Miss Loughlin is hot in the film in an innocent way. She looks just as good today. (Trust me unfortunately watch the film OLD DOGS it’s horrible yet she is beautiful)
This film through it’s crunchy texture it has a smooth lining of a love story at it’s heart. Characters realizing the depth of their emotions. For each other. I am probably giving the film more depth then it actually has but it is a great time capsule time waster. So far it seems that it wasn’t released on DVD.