Do you ever want to just take a day? Forget the emails, the appointments, the meetings that start late and end later? This isn’t a day you need to take. This is a day you want to take. Summer’s coming, the weather’s on point, and you hear the call to just let loose. How much can one person accomplish on a day like today? If his name is Ferris Bueller, there are no limits.
The best way to fake illness is to minimize the symptoms. Clammy hands and a sore tummy are all Ferris (Matthew Broderick) need to convince his devoted parents that he should probably stay home from school. But this isn’t a day to binge watch Netflix; Ferris is keen to make the most of every hour. Step one is to shower and call his best friend, Cameron (Alan Ruck). Cameron needs to let loose and Ferris believes his method of telling, not asking, is the perfect medicine. To round out his perfect team for the perfect day, Ferris has to rescue his girlfriend, Sloane (Mia Sara) from the History of Everything class with the teacher who lingers… on every… word. Ferris and Cameron pull Sloane from under Principal Rooney’s (Jeffrey Jones) nose and skip gaily to freedom. After that, the day takes off as every day should: in a classic (borrowed) convertible car. Ferris has prepared for every outcome, including the potentiality that his parents may check in on their ailing boy, or that Rooney may be hot on his trail, or if his sister, Jeannie (Jennifer Grey), decides to be particularly insufferable today. With not a care in the world left to weigh him down, Ferris is ready for every opportunity this perfect day has to offer.
Before there was Deadpool, Ferris Bueller was the king of the fourth wall. Ferris is the coolest kid in school and we have special access to his train of thought. Ferris’ mission (other than to make the most of every waking minute) is to break Cameron out of stiffsville. He is the Anna to Cameron’s Elsa, the Phoebe to his Ross. The only reason Ferris gets away with all his tomfoolery is because he’s one of those guys. You know those guys. When the world won’t budge, they push a little harder. Ferris repeatedly walks in like he owns the place and it repeatedly gets him what he wants. Are you sure the museum is closed? Even to its… “owner”?
Cameron and Sloane can’t help but follow blindly along in his wake. Ferris takes them on this wild adventure like a daycare worker leading toddlers by a rope. The sidekicks just go with the flow and gape in wonder at their heroic leader. Near-misses and head-on collisions with oblivious parental units add another layer of rebellion to this proud group of locals playing tourist in Daddy’s 1961 Ferrari.
Occasionally prying us away from Ferris’ alluring charm is unlucky Rooney and how far he will go to track down one student. Few people have had as awesome a day as Ferris, but on the opposite spectrum, Rooney’s day is so laughably awful it’s practically a benchmark. The only break the man catches is when he’s knocked out cold on the Buellers’ kitchen floor.
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is the epitome of what it means to take a “me day”. It’s a must-see just so you can add a new line to your bucket list: live a day like Ferris would. Take a chill pill, let your sister skulk all she wants (you’re the favourite anyway), and go check out an art museum in the middle of the afternoon. If you live like Ferris, you only need to live once. 10/10.