Specifically, Cry Baby, which is one of my all-time favourite movies. It’s hard to beat when I need cheering up, since it’s full of ridiculous characters, good tunes and what Mrs Vernon-Williams likes to call ‘hysterectomy pants’.
Essentially, the story is about two factions of teenagers, the squares who are the quintessential ‘good’ kids of the 1950s, with full skirts and a wholesome love for charm school and theme parks, and the drapes, juvenile delinquents who wear tight clothing and sing hillbilly music (which sounds an awful lot like Elvis Presley). In a way, the movie is like Grease’s rebellious and less popular cousin. The plot follows a square called Allison, who falls for a drape nicknamed Cry Baby. She is torn between the squares and the drapes after a brawl at the drapes hangout, where Cry Baby gets arrested. All sorts of pandemonium follows, including false pregnancies and parents speaking in tongues.
The movie has a lot of terrible jokes, particularly from Wanda’s ignorant parents, who unknowingly swear in court and are just excited about Wanda making it onto the radio.
Or even trying to switch their daughter for a Swedish milkmaid.
I’ve shown this movie to friends before, and they look at me like I’m nuts for loving it so much. But there’s something alluring about full skirts and good girls gone bad that makes it so good. And of course, Johnny Depp is in it (as well as a cast of surprisingly big names – Willem Dafoe and Iggy Pop included).
And you cannot deny a movie that captures teenage rebels and their shady relatives in such a loveable light.
But mostly, it’s just Johnny Depp singing on a motorbike.