You’re going to watch it somewhere online today so you might as well watch it here. In a way, this 10-second teaser is as much a tribute to FBDO’s cultural ubiquity as that two-hour fan re-creation was to Star Wars’s: One man, one line, one two-second snippet of music, and that’s enough for every American between the ages of say, 30 and 50 to recognize instantly who and what this is.
And what it is, apparently, is a vehicle to sell Hondas:
A source familiar with Honda’s operations hinted to us earlier this year that the company was going to do a Ferris Bueller-style ad for the Super Bowl starring none other than Matthew Broderick.
The source also added that the spot was going to mimic much of the original film, except this time prominently featuring Hondas. The big jump the two valets do in Cameron’s dad’s Ferrari? We hear this time it’s going to be a Honda CR-V.
Honda is pouring a lot of money into this ad and, according to our source, hired The Hangover writer/director Todd Phillips to put it all together.
Have a look at the sensible hatchback that’s now being sold by the avatar of carefree teenaged joie de vivre. (Is that Broderick seen from behind in the opening shot of the teaser, incidentally, or a stand-in? From the back, he looks even older and grayer.) Broderick and John Hughes kicked around the idea for a sequel to “Ferris” initially but backed off because they believed, correctly, that the movie’s charm came from the moment it captured more so than from the characters themselves. You could take Ferris and Cameron and make them college seniors or junior executives but then you’re really just doing a buddy movie with the requisite hijinx. It’d be better than “Road Trip” or “Old School” (or, lord knows, “The Hangover”), but it wouldn’t be much different. “Ferris” is different because it’s all about the fleeting pleasure of having no responsibilities and endless possibilities as high school is ending and before college has begun. You relate to it, but you know something the characters don’t — that it can’t last. That’s what gives the film its memorable sweetness; in a way, it’s the most nostalgic movie ever made. No wonder companies want to use it in a commercial. Recapture the whimsy of your youth: Drive a, er, Honda CR-V.
If nothing else, the idea of aging Americans trying to reconnect culturally with a bygone age of few responsibilities should make for an excellent opening to a Mark Steyn column about the welfare state.