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'80s Classics Hit the Aero Theatre Tonight: The Outsiders and Rumblefish

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LAist readers who grew up in the ’80s might look back and remember the decade as one with music that was mostly crap (Wham!, Debbie Gibson, Scritti Politti, et al) but with movies that were, like, totally tubular awesome. It was a heyday, nay, we’ll go so far as to call it a golden era for teen and/or young adult films.

The comedies included Sixteen Candles, Porky’s, Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Animal House, while more serious fare included Taps, Pretty In Pink, The Breakfast Club, and St. Elmo’s Fire.

Two of the era’s quintessential young adult dramas celebrate their 25th anniversary (yes!) this year, and the Aero Theatre in Santa Monica is bringing them back to the big screen for a double feature tonight. Up first at 7:30 pm is the Francis Ford Coppola-directed The Outsiders. Based on the S.E. Hinton novel, the film focuses on the battles between the “Socs” and the “Greasers” in an Oklahoma town. The movie featured a lot of pretty boys, some of whom still have careers today. We’re talking a cast that included Matt Dillon, Rob Lowe, Ralph Macchio, Patrick Swayze, Tom Cruise, C. Thomas Howell, Emilio Estevez as boys from the wrong side of the tracks. These are the boys who found themselves in the pages of Tiger Beat every week and tacked up on many a bedroom wall.

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Released the same year, Rumble Fish is the grittier of the two films (shot in black and white, which just implies gritty) on the Aero's bill. Again shot by Coppola and starring Matt Dillon, the film was based on another Hinton novel about the life of a gangbanger (Dillon) and his loner brother (Mickey Rourke). The film also stars Diane Lane, Dennis Hopper, Chris Penn, Nicholas Cage and Tom Waits. Quite a cast.

So if you're in the mood for some nostalgia from the way back machine, then the Aero's where you need to be tonight. And don't forget to recite that Robert Frost poem "Nothing Gold Can Stay" with Pony Boy at the end of The Outsiders. You memorized it once before, right?

Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

Sniff. Sniff.