Thursday, January 31, 2013

100 Movies That Make Me Love Film: 53. Eight Days A Week

53. Eight Days a Week

I would love to meet Michael Davis. In his relatively short career he wrote an action-comedy (Shoot ‘Em Up), a horror comedy (Monster Man) and 3 teen flick/romantic comedies. It’s those three romantic comedies that make me want to meet up. Yes I loved Shoot ‘Em Up and Monster Man but in those romantic comedies Michael Davis created a leading male character who narrates the film and accurately describes the mindset of an adolescent boy. Of those films Eight Days a Week was always my favorite, however the films need each other to survive.

Eight Days a Week takes place the summer before Peter and his crush Erica (Keri Russell) go off to college. Peter has loved Erica (his next door neighbor) for his entire life but it’s not until his grandfather convinces him that he must make a grand gesture to win Erica’s heart.

Peter declares his love of Erica and promises to spend the entire summer sitting under Erica’s window until she falls in love with him too. The film is told from the front lawn as Peter begins to notice the weird aspects of his suburban life. 

There’s his best friend Matt who has masturbated so much that it’s lost it’s appeal, he now searches out new and exciting ways to get off (including but not limited to having sex with a watermelon). Matt is the sexual voice of reason.

Peter also sees the younger generation following in his own steps. He sees himself in one kid, while he can see Erica’s boyfriend Nick in the local bully. 

It’s kind of sad. American Pie is praised as the Teen Flick that brought the R-rated Teen film back, but Eight Days a Week pre-dates it by almost 2 years. I’d even argue that while the acting isn’t fantastic (though I love Joshua Schaefer’s performance) it’s at times a more sincere look at the teenage boy. 

After Eight Days a Week Davis followed it up with 100 Girls which has a similar character as Peter (this time named Matt) in college and finally Girl Fever has Sam recently graduating college. These films all could have been about Peter but I believe Davis wants us to believe that all 3 guys end up happily ever after with their true love. 

Davis hasn’t written or directed anything since 2007’s Shoot ‘Em Up. It makes me sad but I’m hopeful that he’ll return to direct another teen flick in the near future.

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