Generally favorable reviews - based on 11 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 11
  2. Negative: 1 out of 11
  1. 80
    This could have been an unmitigated disaster, but Hughes' way with the material ensured it a special place in the heart of just about everyone who happened to be in high school while Ronald Reagan was President.
  2. Before lapsing into the land of the insipid,... John Hughes actually made a few movies that shined some light on the trials of modern adolescence. The Breakfast Club is one of them.
  3. 75
    Eminently watchable and consistently entertaining...It has a candor that is unexpected and refreshing in a sea of too-often generic teen-themed films.
  4. For all its contrivance, it's lively and amusing and occasionally disconcerting in its reproduction of what life was like in the mid-to-late teens.
  5. 75
    From the neon-sign opening titles to the derivative angst of the dialogue, it's a touchstone of '80s pop culture, and a schizophrenic one, too.
  6. Reviewed by: Joe Brown
    Their conversations give The Breakfast Club its snap, crackle and pop. And this is that rare movie that could benefit from another half hour of talking time. [15 Feb 1985]
  7. Reviewed by: Dave Kehr
    Comes to the comforting conclusion that they're just as alienated, idealistic, and vulnerable as the baby boomers of the 1960s.
  8. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    Hughes, though he gives the material a sense of fun and achieves several moments of genuine warmth, too often resorts to obvious cliches, stereotypes, and easy answers, and throws in the near-obligatory rock video as well.
  9. The five young stars would have mixed well even without the fraudulent encounter-group candor towardS which The Breakfast Club forces them. Mr. Hughes, having thought up the characters and simply flung them together, should have left well enough alone.
  10. 40
    But all that this encounter-session movie actually does is strip a group of high-school kids down to their most banal longings to be accepted and liked. Its real emblem is that dreary, retro ribbon. [8 Apr 1985, p.123]
  11. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    Does director John Hughes really believe, as he writes here, that 'when you grow up, your heart dies.' It may. But not unless the brain has already started to rot with films like this.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 147 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 30
  2. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. Nov 15, 2012
    One of the most honest movies ever made, The Breakfast Club ranks with flawless social dramas such as American Beauty.
  2. Jun 3, 2014
    This is a great look at high school life. As with real life, everybody has a story and inner demons, whether they show them frequently or not. Everybody is also divided based on "status" and rarely get to actually talk to people from other "cliques", as is shown here. That is what makes this film so special, as it breaks down those walls and allows everyone from every different clique to really see the others as they truly are: people just like them. However, what I really liked about the film is one of the discussions they have at the end, where they discuss how their friendships will be once detention ends. This discussion really rings true as I think everybody knows that these kids will never see one another afterwards and, if they do, they may ignore them or mock them after seeing them because of high school social pressures. While this one is a very accurate representation of high school and all of its oddities, it is also very funny. At many times, I found myself laughing quite hard at something somebody said or did. Overall, this is a very good film and I feel ashamed for just watching it now. Full Review »
  3. Nov 3, 2013
    How can you not like it? I've seen it so many times and just saw it again recently and it still cracks me up. It's a freaking classic, Plain and simple. Full Review »