Class Clowns

Go back to school with Fast Times at Ridgemont High

With cinematic role models such as Napoleon Dynamite, we wonder if any of today's teenagers will ever be lucky in love or anything else. When we were their age, movies helped us navigate the minefields of high school, the mall and our friend's backyards. Take Fast Times at Ridgemont High, for example, which the Lakewood Theater screens just in time for the back-to-school season: Even those way past senior year should be prepared to take notes on mating, dating and relating.

Fast Times follows a group of high school students in Southern California who are looking for love with the help of their older classmates. Seriously, there's nothing a freshman on the prowl needs more than sage advice from a worldly junior or senior, right? But some of the advice is good. For example, don't buy $40 of film from the cute camera store girl if you don't have a camera. And flaunt your achievements. After all, high school is probably the only time that being class president will impress anyone besides your mom. What not to do: Smoke copious amounts of weed and order pizza during history class. Unless you're Sean Penn (as character Jeff Spicoli) and don't need an education because you're going to win an Academy Award someday.

The Lakewood is a classic theater, and Fast Times is a classic film. And that means that those of us who caught it the first time around are--let's say--classic folks. Embrace it. Go to the movie, comment on how young everyone looked and cover the kids' ears during the parts with colorful language. And to keep with the theme of everything "classic" being new again, go find some slip-on checkered Vans sneakers to wear. You won't even have to unearth yours from the closet. We bet your kids will let you borrow theirs. Just ask permission first.

 
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