Heathers (1989)

A massively clever, thick-as-a-brick screenplay by Daniel Waters gave this teen satire plenty of ground to tear up—it mockingly endorses, among other things, in-school murder, terrorism, and teen suicide, while dishing homosexuality, teachers, parents, football, and bulimia—all in fun, of course. Winona Ryder’s wary clique-follower hangs with the cool, big-haired girls of 1980s Westerberg High (named after Paul, famed lead singer of the Replacements), and has her homicidal fantasies realized by new kid Christian Slater (doing a killer Jack Nicholson). Conceptually Heathers is outlandish, right up to the climactic bomb, but it’s also endlessly inventive, line for slangy line, and the feeling of teen social crisis is there.



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