Mischief (1985) Review

Mischief (1985)

Guided by James Dean, the eternal symbol of youthful rebellion, a gawky high school student obsessed with the hottest girl in class takes a crash course in teenage coolness from his motorcycle-rebel neighbor.

Mischief (1985) is a gritty coming-of-age tale that sneaks into the hearts of movie lovers like a wisecracking rebel looking for trouble in a sleepy small town.

Directed by Mel Damski, this underrated gem harks back to the days when teenage escapades were fueled by hormones, rebellion, and the relentless pursuit of adventure.

Set in the ’50s, the film follows the misadventures of Jonathan Bellah (Doug McKeon), a wide-eyed newcomer who’s got a soft spot for Marilyn Monroe and a yearning for romance. McKeon’s portrayal perfectly captures the awkward charm of adolescence, making us root for the underdog in this turbulent journey through first love.

Damski’s direction brings a gritty authenticity to the ’50s setting, immersing us in a world where jukeboxes, fast cars, and the local burger joint are the epicenter of teenage life.

The pacing, like a roller-coaster of emotions, keeps us on edge, swinging between uproarious laughter and heart-wrenching moments of teenage angst.

Visually, Mischief captures the nostalgia of the era with a raw, unfiltered lens.

The cinematography paints a vivid picture of small-town America, with all its quirks and charms. The film’s soundtrack, a jukebox full of ’50s hits, adds an extra layer of grit to this tale of teenage rebellion and romance.

While Mischief excels in its portrayal of the teenage experience, it occasionally stumbles into clichés and predictability. Some characters feel like familiar archetypes, and certain plot points may feel well-worn. However, these minor flaws don’t overshadow the film’s overall impact.

Mischief is a gritty ode to the awkwardness, excitement, and heartache of adolescence.

It’s a reminder of a time when every stolen glance, every reckless adventure, and every bold declaration of love felt like the most important thing in the world.

For movie lovers seeking a dose of nostalgia and a gritty journey back to the teenage years, Mischief serves up a coming-of-age story that’s as timeless as a ’50s rock ‘n’ roll classic.

Movie Trailer

Main Cast & Crew

Director: Mel Damski  |  Writer: Noel Black

Main Cast: Doug McKeon, Catherine Mary Stewart, Kelly Preston

Where to Watch

YouTube: There is at least one version on YouTube.

Streaming: Not available for streaming

Extra Credit

Cast Then & Now

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