Better Off Dead

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Released 1985

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Better Off Dead

Movie Summary

Director:
Savage Steve Holland
Released:
1985
Rating:
PG
Better Off Dead is a romantic comedy film that centers on high school student Lane Meyer (John Cusack). Lane comes from an odd family; his mother Jenny (Kim Darby) is a housewife who is not particularly good at anything, his father, Al (David Ogden Stiers) is numb to everything around him and his brother, Badger (Scooter Stevens) is smart, but does not speak. When Lane's girlfriend, Beth (Amanda Wyss), leaves him for Roy Stalin (Aaron Dozier), the captain of the school's ski team, Lane attempts to end his life on numerous occasions. However, every attempt he makes fails, often under funny circumstances. Lane's life takes a turn for the better when he meets Monique (Diane Franklin), a French foreign exchange student. The two spend time together, doing things Beth would never have done with him, including working on his 1969 Camaro. Just when he thinks his life is getting better, a competition threatens to ruin Lane's newfound confidence.

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Metacritic Score

  • 80

    Film Threat

    Better Off Dead is the kind of movie that people won't really fess up to liking, but I've rarely met anyone who didn't secretly love it passionately.

  • 63

    Miami Herald Bill Cosford

    Better Off Dead has the body of a tired teen comedy but the soul of an inspired student film; it's the first movie in a long time to interrupt itself periodically with flights of a...

  • 25

    Chicago Tribune Gene Siskel

    Better Off Dead, a seemingly teenage comedy that wasn't good enough to be released during the prime summer play dates, is utterly devoid of appeal. [15 Oct 1985, p.C2]

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More Info About This Movie

Categories

Comedy, Drama

Themes

Romantic Comedy, Teen, Dark Comedy