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Unrealistic Prom Scenes on Film

May 27, 2009


It’s called by many names in cinema, but the big high school dance, the one where Cinderellas step out in glass slippers and the ugly ducklings start singing their swan songs, is generally known as Prom. They take place everywhere from gymnasiums to four-star hotels, but frequently end in drunkenness and frustrated hopes of losing one’s virginity. Here are few examples of Prom Nights that give high school juniors and seniors everywhere unrealistic expectations, and what you can learn from them:


Carrie. Based on Stephen King’s novel, this classic horror film teaches us not to make fun of the awkward loner girl with supernatural powers. Fortunately, these days it’s not that easy to get a hold of that much pig’s blood, and frankly, no one in high school cares enough about humiliating others to go to that much trouble, so you’re probably safe.


Grease. From what we see in the Rydell High School gym, we learn that Prom is all about the Hand Jive and slutty women from rival schools stealing our boyfriends and our dance contest trophies. There’s a chance of getting mooned. Also, if you bring a date, expect him or her to wind up dancing with someone else.


Mean Girls. Most people don’t bother to vote for Prom Queen, but if they did, it might be because they thought one of the candidates pushed another one in front of a bus. Lindsay Lohan gives a nice speech when she’s announced the winner and breaks a plastic tiara into pieces, tossing them around the room to show that everyone has a little queen inside. Important Lesson: the cute popular guy will still dance with you even if you show up in your Mathletes’ uniform.


Never Been Kissed. According to this movie, you can go back to high school, become the most popular girl in your class, get your English teacher to fall in love with you, and bring the curtain down on the dancing with an impassioned speech about not torturing the geeks because they shall inherit the earth. In real life, this is probably followed by a trip to AMC to see Terminator: Salvation.


Pretty in Pink. It’s a good lesson about over-coming class differences, even if you don’t care for the ending, and apparently despite all evidence to the contrary, it’s more important to end up with the handsome rich boy than the best and most dedicated friend you’ve ever had.


Prom Night. You’re probably not expecting to be tracked to prom by a murderer, but after you watch this 2008 horror remake, you might start looking at the hotel staff differently. Now’s the time to come clean to your friends about any killers you might have escaped in the past who are holding a grudge.


Romy & Michele’s High School Reunion. The mean popular girls in movies spend a lot of time coming up with plots to humiliate the misfits, as evidenced by the 80s prom flashback. The scenario of Romy and Michele dancing together is much more likely, especially since these days everyone just sort of jumps around in a big group, and no one really knows how to slow dance.


Saved. All the dancing and Christian rock are likely to induce premature labor in any of your pregnant friends. Also, beware of dateless frenemies who are already on the edge – they might decide to drive their vans into Jesus.


She’s All That. Any unlikely candidates for Prom Queen might want to reconsider before accepting the nominations – if you’re not already popular, people don’t usually recommend you for the job without an ulterior motive. Still, as long as you’re carrying pepper spray, it doesn’t hurt to get gussied up and take part in a ‘spontaneous’ school-wide dance routine.


-written for Starpulse

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