FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH
Director: Amy Heckerling
USA / 1982 / 90 min
Introduced by Curator Emma Myers
Last streamed on Fri, May 20
This zeitgeist-defining debut from Heckerling (Clueless) captures the hormonal highs and lows of high school life in the San Fernando Valley in the early ’80s. Jennifer Jason Leigh leads a cast of future stars (Sean Penn, Forest Whitaker, Judge Reinhold, Eric Stoltz…), giving a breakout performance as Stacy Hamilton, a freshman virgin who divides her time between working at a shopping mall pizza parlor and getting tips on sex and dating from her more seasoned friend (Phoebe Cates). When a pool house rendezvous with a smarmy older schoolmate (Robert Romanus) gets her pregnant, Stacy is left alone to deal with the situation. Heckerling, working from a screenplay by Cameron Crowe, depicts the teenage experience with rare realism and heart—particularly in her candid portrayal of abortion.