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Film Review – Girls Just Want to Have Fun Published on: April 13, 2020

Girls Just Want to Have Fun (1985, Teen, PG)

In times of stress, nothing can put you more at ease than watching a feel good movie. A good choice is Girls Just Want to Have Fun. This classic 80’s teen dance movie stars Sarah Jessica Parker, Helen Hunt, and Shannen Doherty in one of their earlier roles. Parker plays Janey Glenn, an army brat who gets the chance to realize her dream after her family moves to Chicago, home of her favorite dance show, Dance TV. Janey loves to dance, so she is thrilled when the station announces that it’s holding a contest to find two new dancers to be featured on the show. There’s only one thing stopping her: her strict military dad. He thinks she’s too young to be running around a big city on her own. With the help of her new friend Lynn (Hunt), Janey is motivated to break the rules for the first time in her life and audition. She is selected to be a finalist and then is partnered with Jeff (Lee Montgomery) – your typical motorcycle – riding bad boy. Janey and Jeff couldn’t be more wrongly matched as a couple; yet, they find a way to work together and fall in love at the same time. It looks like they have a good chance at winning the contest. However, there is another finalist that might stand in their way. Natalie (Holly Gagnier), a spoiled, rich girl, also wants to become a DTV regular and she is used to getting what she wants. Luckily, Janey and Jeff have friends and family that they can count on for help.

Girls Just Want to Have Fun is a quintessential teen movie filled with classic 80’s pop music, teased hair, and bright clothing. While the movie is considerably outdated, I think it is pretty good overall. It has a predictable storyline, but it also has a positive message about believing in yourself and following your heart. It is also worth mentioning that this movie features some of today’s popular actors. Doherty has only a small supporting role, but she still manages to shine a little as Jeff’s annoying, younger sister Maggie. Hunt, on the other hand, is terrific as the wild and rebellious friend. With her outrageous fashion choices and funny one-liners, she literally steals the show.

Another reason why you should consider watching Girls Just Want to Have Fun is the soundtrack. Filled with upbeat and catchy music, it is guaranteed to put anyone in a good mood. Also, let’s not forget about the dance sequences, which have to be my favorite parts. The highlights are the initial competition, the dance montage of Janey and Jeff rehearsing, and the final Dance TV competition at the end. This movie definitely has some amazing choreography. If you are dancer, you are sure to appreciate this aspect of the film.

While Girls Just Want to Have Fun may not be in the same league as The Breakfast Club or Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, this doesn’t mean that the movie should be overlooked. It is just a fun, lighthearted comedy, but sometimes that is just what you need. This is especially true now more than ever. Even if you aren’t particularly nostalgic about the 80’s, it will at least make you laugh. So give this movie a try. You never know. By the end of it, you might just find yourself dancing – in the street!

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