'Weird Science' Review: A Movie About Two Teenagers That Build a Pedophile
I was allowed to watch most movies when I was a kid. Like most children exposed to adult humor and situations, I had several movies I watched and enjoyed back in the 80s without fully comprehending them. One of those movies was Weird Science. What did I like about it back then? Cute boys wearing bras on their heads: HILARIOUS! The cute boys create a magical woman that helps them win respect and the girls of their dreams: AWESOME! They turned Chet into a turd! Um, were those boobs? That’s not so great. BUT SHE WAS SHOT RIGHT OUT OF THE CHIMNEY! AHAHAHAHAHAH!”
Kids are dumb.
Once Netflix started throwing out old favorites in their streaming service, I decided to go back and watch Weird Scienceagain as an adult. I was set to revisit the movie that held a special place in my childhood and ready to laugh. Alas, Weird Science is one movie that has gone from being goofy and light to creepy and uncomfortable for me.
Don’t get me wrong. The bras on the head are still hilarious, Chet is a superb asshole, and I still say “float an air biscuit” to indicate flatulence. The sh*t monster is a classic film masterpiece and Robert Downey Jr. is adorably horrible as one of the antagonists. The invasion of the motorcycle gang from beyond some faraway thunderdome is gleeful fun and freezing grandparents and placing them in a cabinet to keep the party going is decidedly dark humor at its finest.
It’s the rest of the movie that gives me the heebie jeebies, specifically the age difference between Lisa, Gary, and Wyatt and the things that she does with them. In 1985, the year the movie was released, Ilan Mitchell-Smith (Wyatt) was 16 years old and Anthony Michael Hall (Gary) was 17 years old. Kelly LeBrock (Lisa) was 25 years old. It is also specifically mentioned that the boys are supposed to be fifteen and Lisa is supposed to be 23. Perhaps you remember this innocent romp from the movie:
Two underage boys take a shower with a minutes-old creation that is actually a 23 year old woman. I thought it was funny when I was a kid, but now that I’m old it just makes me feel icky. Watching the shower scene makes me feel like Chris Hansen is going to show up at my door and take me into custody or something. During my re-watch, this was the point where I knew that I was going to have a bad time.
Throughout the remainder of the movie we get tons of references to Lisa being into Wyatt and Gary, liking rough sex, and exposing the boys to “… sex, drugs, rock-n-roll… chips, dips, chains, whips… You know, your basic high school orgy type of thing. I mean, uh, I’m not talking candle wax on the nipples, or witchcraft or anything like that, no, no, no. Just a couple of hundred kids running around in their underwear, acting like complete animals.” I just can’t. I JUST CAN’T.
Obviously the way to a boy’s confidence is through his mouth and boners, so you have Lisa playing tonsil hockey with Wyatt and grabbing his ass.
Then the morning after features A FIFTEEN YEAR OLD KID showing off his abs and ding dang bulge in Lisa’s panties.
Two boys decided to make a woman for their own personal pleasure and it worked. Lisa did end up teaching the boys what they are capable of and giving them the confidence they needed to grow up and move past their loser mindset, even if that wasn’t their intent. So that’s nice. I’m willing to suspend disbelief when it comes to the goofy idea of using a computer, some magazine pages fed into a scanner, and a doll to make a woman. I just can’t let go of the feeling of ick that permeates the film for me now.
Weird Science went from being a solid favorite to one of the creepiest entries in John Hughes’ oeuvre. Adulthood robbed me of the innocence needed to fully enjoy a movie where two young boys create an adult woman that they use to bolster their own feelings of sexual desire and self-worth while loosely supervised by a physically and psychologically abusive sociopath. Growing up is difficult and so is sitting through Weird Science as an adult. Damn it.