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4.5 out of 5 stars
Sixteen Candles
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137 of 142 people found the following review helpful
on January 20, 2011
Format: DVD
Soundtrack Issues
In the first DVD release of Sixteen Candles, several of the songs from the original soundtrack were missing due to licensing rights. For anyone looking for a version of the movie with the original soundtrack, get the "High School Reunion Collection" (released in 2003). This is the version I own and it has all of the original songs in it. I believe the "Flashback Edition" (released in 2008) also has the original songs, but I cannot verify that. The original release (released in 1998) has no special heading/title and is the version with several missing songs.

MPAA Rating Controversy
As far as the "PG" rating, do not buy this movie thinking you are going to enjoy introducing your young kids to a great 80's throwback. Prior to buying this movie, I had only seen it on TV. I assumed that the edited TV version was similar to the unedited movie because of the "PG" rating. As it turns out, Sixteen Candles came out in May, 1984, 2 months before the "PG-13" rating was implemented. So at the time, movies were either rated "G", "PG", or "R". Sixteen Candles was originally going to be rated "R", but prior to release, just enough F-bombs were edited out to make the "PG" cut and reach the targeted teenage audience. This is NOT equivelant to a modern day "PG" film. There are still at least 2 F-bombs in the movie as well as several more S-words, A-words, slanders to sexual orientation, and other explicit language. There are also underage drinking, sexual innuendo, and a shower scene with blatant up close nudity.

Summary
In short, this is a great classic 80s movie worth owning with the understanding that it should be considered a "PG-13" movie that just missed being a rated "R" movie, as would have been the case if it were released just a few months later than it was. For purists, get the "High School Reunion Collection" to experience the movie with the original soundtrack as it was intended.
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162 of 172 people found the following review helpful
on November 6, 1999
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
I have to agree with the reviewer who complained about the "butchered" soundtrack. I grew up with "Sixteen Candles" -- I've seen it so many times I practically know it by heart -- and the songs are as much a part of the movie as the dialogue. I wonder if someone forgot to get permission to use some of the songs when the original movie was released -- but that wouldn't explain the cheezed-up "muzak" version of the opening credit music. And why substitute "Strangers in the Night" for "New York, New York" as background music for the post-party conversation between Jake and The Geek? The replacement music, as a whole, seems thrown together -- the songs are obviously meant to sound "almost like" the originals but for anyone who really knows the movie "almost like" just doesn't cut it. The most awkward moment is when the family is leaving the house the morning of Ginny's wedding. In the original version of the film, David Bowie's "Young American" is playing in the background as the family piles into two cars. In this version, there is NO music playing -- the family enters the cars in silence. What used to be a funny, quick scene now seems agonizingly drawn out.
"Sixteen Candles" is still a great movie, of course, and I'm glad that I have it in my DVD collection. But I found myself cringing every time a song was changed -- I could barely concentrate on the diaglogue at times. (I don't know what I would have done if the Thompson Twins' "If you were here" was replaced at the end of the movie; thankfully, it wasn't.)
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62 of 72 people found the following review helpful
HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICEon January 29, 2001
Format: DVD
Sixteen Candles takes place basically over the course of one day when a family forgets the sweet sixteenth birthday of a girl amid the preparations for the oldest daughter's wedding. The sixteen year old is played by the 80's teen queen Molly Ringwald. It was the movie that helped her gain that title and is the best of her career. She plays the role of Samantha Baker with ease and charm. We feel all her range of emotions from the hurt of being forgotten to the longing she feels for a boy, Jake Ryan, who she has a major crush on but doesn't think he knows that she's alive. Little does Samantha know that Jake wants to meet her and the movie goes through a series of near misses between the two. Anthony Michael Hall plays "The Geek" who is constantly hitting on Samantha. He acts like he is a man of the world, but really is full of hot air. Mr. Hall is extremely funny and the scene where he gives Jake advice on women and eventually drives the prom queen home in Jake's father's Roll Royce are priceless. Both sets of Samantha's grandparents are funny, one set are the worriers and the other the carefree sort. Gedde Wannabe is funny as an exchange student who comes with one of the grandparents. He does take the Asian stereotypes to the max but he comes across with a nice degree of charm. John and Joan Cusack show up in bit parts and the movie has a great soundtrack. The Thompson Twins' "Wish You Were Here" perfectly frames the ending scene where Jake and Samantha finally hook up. Sixteen Candles was the directorial debut of John Hughes and set the stage for the Brat Pack movies that would be the dominant teen movies of the 80's. Unlike his other movies like The Breakfast Club, Pretty In Pink or Some Kind Of Wonderful, Sixteen Candles isn't full of teen angst, self-examination and skepticism that the others are. It is a charming look at the life of a teenager that seems to be the most real.
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83 of 98 people found the following review helpful
on August 23, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
This is one of my all time favorite movies, and I bought this video because my old copy had worn out. After watching 10 minutes of the new copy, I felt physically ill. The entire soundtrack's been changed! No "Love of the Common People", no "Happy Birthday". I couldn't watch any further. Some moron has butchered this film, and I'd return this copy if I could. If you've never seen the original version of this film then go ahead and buy it because the actual film is great and you won't notice the difference in the music. But to anyone who has seen it before, find an original copy. Watching this version will make you sick.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICEon September 3, 2003
Format: DVD
Sixteen Candles takes place basically over the course of one day when a family forgets the sweet sixteenth birthday of one daughter amid the preparations for the oldest daughter's wedding. The sixteen year old is played by the 80's teen queen Molly Ringwald. It was the movie that helped her gain that title and is the best of her career. She plays the role of Samantha Baker with ease and charm. We feel all her range of emotions from the hurt of being forgotten to the longing she feels for a boy, Jake Ryan, who she has a major crush on but doesn't think he knows that she's alive. Little does Samantha know that Jake wants to meet her and the movie goes through a series of near misses between the two. Anthony Michael Hall plays "The Geek" who is constantly hitting on Samantha. He acts like he is a man of the world, but really is full of hot air. Mr. Hall is extremely funny and the scenes where he gives Jake advice on women and eventually drives the prom queen home in Jake's father's Roll Royce are priceless. Both sets of Samantha's grandparents are funny, one set are the worriers and the other the carefree sort. Gedde Wannabe is funny as an exchange student who comes with one of the grandparents. He does take the Asian stereotypes to the max but he comes across with a nice degree of charm. John and Joan Cusack show up in bit parts and the movie has a great soundtrack. The Thompson Twins' "Wish You Were Here" perfectly frames the ending scene where Jake and Samantha finally hook up. Sixteen Candles was the directorial debut of John Hughes and set the stage for the Brat Pack movies that would be the dominant teen movies of the 80's. Unlike his other movies like The Breakfast Club, Pretty In Pink or Some Kind Of Wonderful, Sixteen Candles isn't full of teen angst, self-examination and skepticism that the others are. It is a charming look at the life of a teenager that seems to actually be real. The new version restores the original soundtrack and improves the sound somewhat, but compared with most digitally remastered dvd's, this one isn't quite up to par. It is definately an improvement over the original dvd version and since the first one has long been out of print, it is worthwhile just to have it back in circulation.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on January 19, 2003
Format: DVD
Ok, I was an 80's pre-teen, now late 20 something.
I grew up on John Hughes films, like the rest of you out there-I would NEVER knock this film. I love it. What I hate, is the way some movies are butchered by the production process and or the brilliant people who decide to re-do a classic.
Here's what's the deal with this DVD. I bought it brand new for a very low price several years ago, and now I see it has been removed from the market in most places. I know why. #1 The picture quality is not great. Grainy. #2 They changed the soundtrack in the film. YOU CAN'T DO THAT, especially on these "genre specific" titles we of a certain age can practically recite to each other when we are bored.
Examples: During the beginning title sequence when everyone is heading to the school, the song playing (when all the people are sitting down and pounding thier feet)is re-done and it is LAME. The scene in the beginning where Samantha is checking herself out in the mirror is not playing as loudly, and it isn't the same song. During the scene where Samantha fills out the "sex quiz" the song "Happy Birthday" by Altered Images is playing in the background. Now it is completely silent with no song playing at all. It took me that amount of time after getting it home to flip out and say, what the [heck?] My husband is not of my generation. He had no idea what I was talking about, so if you are not that particular about this, it may not bother you. It does state on the back of the box: "Some Music Rescored/Home Video Version". I didn't see the fine print when I bought it.
The song playing while Jake (heart throb) dances with Caroline (prom queen) at the school dance is "True". The catchy song that plays when Samantha gets up the courage to talk to Jake in the gym coat check area is different. And I could have sworn there was a George Michael (actually that would have been WHAM!) song playing at one point during the party scene, but it is gone too.
Now it is hard to get ahold of it, with rumours of it never coming back..I am going to hold onto it even with it's flaws, because it may never. I'd rather have it, than not have it in that case, but I am glad I paid very little for it and feel bad for those who have to fork out tons to get it now. Shame on you Image Entertainment and Universal!! =0(
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on April 7, 2002
Format: DVD
This is one of my favorite movies, but no one should pay [the high cost] new for this out of print movie. The music is not original to the movie because the studio lost the music rights. That's why it is out of print. So, my advice is this: wait till its comes out in its original form. And to those selling it for [the high cost], get a grip.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on June 10, 2005
Format: DVD
I saw this film when it came out and fell in love with it. When the VHS edition came out a few years later I watched it thinking "something is not quite right here, if my memory serves me well..." And I was right. Many of the songs from the original film were removed ( for copyright and financial reasons, I am to assume ) and some of the dialogue was missing and/or changed. My friends kept telling me I was crazy. But I KNEW I remembered hearing David Bowie's "Young Americans" playing during the scene when the family is getting into their cars to go to the wedding near the end of the movie. That, and the song playing during the opening credits ( "Kajagoogoo" by the band of the same name) was changed. Several others spring to mind, but the point to this aimless rambling is to let the potential buyer know that this is the ORIGINAL uncut version of John Hughes' classic Eighties romance, complete with all the original songs. This is a classic. Incredibly funny. And loaded with roles featuring future stars ( both the Cusacks, John and Joan, as well as a young Jamie Gertz).
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on September 27, 2003
Format: DVD
My Sixteen Candles VHS version has been a most coveted part of my collection for quite some time now. When the remastered dvd was released, I bought it with the idea that I could save this movie for posterity! However I was certainly displeased with how it came out. Not only does it have no additional features on the dvd, but the frequent viewer would also notice with shock and anger that some of the songs were changed. A change in music certainly changes the mood of that particular scene! Namely the opening sequence at school,parts of the school dance, Anthony Michael Hall pulling the car out of Jake Ryan's garage. I will also add that I felt the sound effects were amplified so much that it's distracting to the dialogue and makes it less humorous- but perhaps I was so displeased the the rest of the experience that this is not a valid criticism. To someone who truly liked Sixteen Candles as it was.. I wouldn't recommend this DVD as a replacement to the old vhs version.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on January 20, 2002
Format: DVD
During the 80s, many of us had seen this movie about a hundred times. Either on cable or renting it. So we KNOW the music, we know which songs come when.
Unfortunately this DVD does not have the same music..some of it has even been removed entirely (like the scene where everyone is getting into their cars to get to the wedding).
Until a special edition comes out with all the original music, I'd definitely skip this one!
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