Nature, Nuture and Human Diversity: "The Breakfast Club"

Essay by sweetcheeks925 November 2006

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John Hughes' 1985 film, The Breakfast Club, tells the story of five high school students: the brain Brian, the athlete Andrew, the criminal John, the princess Claire, and the basketcase Allison; who are forced to spend the day in Saturday detention. By the end of the film, they find that they have more in common than they ever realized. Despite each of their academic success or economic background, they realize that everyone has their own problems. In addition, it is understood that the members of the group have each grown through both nature and nurture aspects of upbringing.

The movie deals with the human tendency toward bias and offending the weak. The characters are caught somewhere between childhood and adulthood, making those situations very emotional. This combination of stress causes each student to reveal the reason for them landing in detention. Each person admitted to feeling extremely pressured, either by parents or friends.

The influence that other people have upon us can be powerful. Brian felt pressured by his parents to get top grades; only A's. He was worried that he would fail and resorted to bringing a gun to school. It turned out to be a flare gun, but a gun nonetheless. Both Andrew and John believed their fathers found them as 'big disappointments'. Andrew tried to make himself look 'cool' by degrading another student. John described his father as abusive and a drug addict. Claire's parents apparently were wealthy and she was popular at school, whereas Allison seemed deprived and had no friends. The upbringing of each, in one's own environment and under varying conditions, caused each student feel they had to be a certain thing and act a certain way.

However, the fact that everyone had their own problems brought the group together as a whole. They...