Welcome to lunch court. That’s Spicoli over there, trying hard to unwrap a bologna sandwich. His eyes are still red-rimmed from the three bowls of dope he smoked after his morning surf. Stacy Hamilton doesn’t look any different even though she finally lost her virginity last night. Linda Barrett, Stacy’s best bud, wants to hear all about it. After all, she gives lessons. And here comes Brad Hamilton, king of the lunch court and prince of the fast-food employee hierarchy. Brad’s a guy who takes pride in his fries. Mike Damone takes pride in The Attitude, which he developed in Philly, his hometown, where “life is cheap.” And here’s that wussy Mark Ratner. Girls make him sweat. He’ll do more than sweat when he turns up in the yearbook class picture with something missing.
These kids are, uh, the future of America. Cameron Crowe spent a year with them at Ridgemont High in Anytown, California, and if you can’t imagine or can’t remember (last week? last year? last decade?) what it’s like to have acne, bio lab, Saturday night car cruises, and the embarrassment of parents, Fast Times at Ridgemont High will bring it all home for you. It’s tense, traumatic and marginally insane—and just like high school, it’s poignant, entertaining and totally true.