7 Rebels Without A Cause

We give 'em something to rebel against...

Today's edition of Total Film's DVD Club - where we watch and Twitter about a classic movie with you invited to join in - is focusing on Rebel Without A Cause.

So we thought we'd take a look at some rebels without real reason - or a clue how to rebel and give them something to really get behind.

Take a gander then join us tonight at 8pm (GMT) for Twittering fun...


The Rebel: JD, Heathers (1989)
 
Without A Cause: No one is actually sure what JD (Christian Slater) is rebelling against, besides reality and conventional societal morals.
 
He’s basically a psycho – poisoning, shooting and ultimately attempting to blow up his classmates under the guise of helping Veronica (Winona Ryder) deal with the catty abuse of the popular, titular high school girl gang (her former bessie mates).

It doesn’t end well for JD, but Veronica gets some confidence out of the incident. So, yay?

Suggested Cause: If JD could have been stopped before, er, he blew himself to smithereens, perhaps his attention could have been directed towards launching a campaign to stop bullying?

Either that or we sure the US intelligence services would appreciate his creatively malign talents.

Next: Danny Zuko


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The Rebel:
Danny Zuko, Grease (1978)
 
Without A Cause:
A sort of low-rent James Dean with extra Brylcreem, Danny is rebelling against oppressive parents and those who would stop him drag racing. Yes, that’s about it.

Oh, and he sings about it a lot. That’s very tough, Mr rebel. You’re about as hardened as the High School Musical whingers.
 
Suggested Cause:
We think he should be made to front a campaign against the shocking over-use of hair product.

We can see him in a PSA now: “Danny thinks it’s cool to load three tonnes of petroleum gel into his hair. But he didn’t realise it was giving him quiff mange. Don’t be a statistic, go natural.”

Next: John Bender


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The Rebel:
John Bender, The Breakfast Club (1985)
 
Without A Cause: Aside from a pushy dad (parents who just don’t understand their kids is a key element for most rebels), Bender (Judd Nelson) is a low-rent hoodlum with a taste for picking on geeks, nerds and outsider.

But despite his rough edges, he’s such a mild-mannered wannabe tough guy that it’s hard to see what he’s really against.
 
Suggested Cause:
After school programs are a sorely needed part of educational life, so we’d put him to work promoting both summer schools and extra classes.

Also, he could host a seminar for the local fire brigade on Alarm Safety issues.

Next: Kathryn Merteuil


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The Rebel: Kathryn Merteuil, Cruel Intentions (1999)
 
Without A Cause: A lady rebel! But Kathryn (Sarah Michelle Gellar) has even less to fight against than many of her male colleagues on the list mostly because she’s a privileged, oversexed brat.

She makes bets about deflowering virgins with the prize of her step-brother (the equally smug Ryan Philippe) getting to shag her, snorts coke from her crucifix necklace and generally rebels by being a class A beyotch.
 
Suggested Cause: Teen work ethic, surely? Have her parents give her something really moan about by cutting off her cash and making her use the riches-to-rags story to encourage other teens to work hard and be better people.

Or sexually transmitted diseases, because with her history, she’s likely a bigger germ factory than that monkey from Outbreak.

Next: Ferris Bueller

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The Rebel:
Ferris Bueller (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)
 
Without A Cause: Dear Ferris (Matthew Broderick): you have it all – nice, caring parents, a comfy home, enough gadgets to keep any ‘80s teen satisfied and an awesome girlfriend.

But you’re just not happy, are you dude? You don’t like school, your teachers are boring drones and you’d rather spend the day kicking back in Chicago town.

Grow up and find something real to rebel against, dude.
 
Suggested Cause:
Road safety, possibly tied to the Proper Care And Protection Of Ferrari Automobiles.

Next: Jimmy Cooper

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The Rebel: Jimmy Cooper, Quadrophenia (1979)
 
Without A Cause: A boring job and parental disillusionment (that old chestnut) see James Michael “Jimmy” Cooper (Phil Daniels) losing himself in mild rebellion by becoming a mod.

Cue ska music marathons, speed parties and Vespa driving, not to run-ins with the equally disenfranchise rockers.

Mostly, though, he’s just complaining for the sake of complaining.
 
Suggested Cause:
He could be the face of a campaign to bring mods and rockers together.

The joint-action committee could hold parties for both groups where they could share experiences, listen to each others’ music and try to work out differences without resorting to fisticuffs.

Next: Mark Hunter


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The Rebel: Mark Hunter, AKA “Hard Harry”, Pump Up The Volume (1990)
 
Without A Cause: Hunter (Christian Slater – him again) channels his misunderstood teen angst into a literal channel – radio broadcasts that get his local town buzzing.

But it’s not like he’s got real problems besides the usual teenage poor-me stuff, and his words eventually prompt one listener to suicide.
 
Suggested Cause: Since he’s so keen on broadcasting, why isn’t he the face of recruiting kids into broadcasting classes. Or these days, of course, he’d be Twittering.


So that’s our rebel list. Again, don’t forget that today’s DVD Club subject is Rebel Without A Clause. Be there at 8pm GMT or be… er… square? 

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