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The Best Characters In John Hughes Movies

Updated May 12, 2021 823 votes 75 voters 1.2k views30 items

List RulesVote up your favorite characters in films that were directed or produced by John Hughes.

Get ready for a blast from the past as we rank some of John Hughes’ best and most memorable characters. There are so many great characters in John Hughes movies that it can be hard to pick a favorite. The writer/director/producer had an amazing output in the '80s and early '90s. His directorial debut was Sixteen Candles, which made Molly Ringwald a star. From there, he delivered the classics The Breakfast Club and Ferris Bueller's Day Off.

Hughes is best known for his teen comedies, but he was also responsible for films aimed at a more adult audience. Planes, Trains and Automobiles is a prime example. That R-rated 1987 Steve Martin and John Candy comedy gave us two of the very best John Hughes movie characters - Neal Page and shower curtain ring salesman Del Griffith. In every case, Hughes created fictional people who felt real and who dealt with issues audiences could identify with.

Vote up the best John Hughes characters from the list below. It includes characters from movies where he was both writer and director, as well as films in which he was the writer and producer only, such as Pretty in Pink and Home Alone.

If one of your favorites isn't here, add it. Don't forget to check back to see how other users rank your addition.

  • 1
    Ferris Bueller's Day Off
    36
    10

    Played by: Matthew Broderick

    Memorable quote: "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."

  • 2
    Ferris Bueller's Day Off
    22
    9

    Played by: Alan Ruck

    Memorable quote: "Ferris Bueller, you're my hero."

  • 3
    The Breakfast Club
    26
    14

    Played by: Judd Nelson

    Memorable quote: "Being bad feels pretty good, huh?"

  • 4
    The Breakfast Club
    20
    10

    Played by: Anthony Michael Hall

    Memorable quote: "You see us as you want to see us - in the simplest terms, in the most convenient definitions."

  • 5
    Ferris Bueller's Day Off
    17
    10

    Played by: Jeffrey Jones

    Memorable quote: "Les jeux sont faits. Translation: the game is up. Your a** is mine."

  • 6
    Pretty in Pink
    17
    14

    Played by: Jon Cryer

    Memorable quote: "May I admire you again today?"

  • 7
    Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, Home Alone
    9
    7

    Played by: Joe Pesci

    Memorable quote: "I don't care if they give me the chair, I'm going to kill that kid!"

  • 8
    The Breakfast Club
    9
    7

    Played by: Paul Gleason

    Memorable quote: "Don't mess with the bull, young man - you'll get the horns."

  • 9
    Sixteen Candles
    9
    7

    Played by: Molly Ringwald

    Memorable quote: "I can't believe this. They f*cking forgot my birthday."

  • 10
    Ferris Bueller's Day Off
    17
    17

    Played by: Mia Sara

    Memorable quote: "Sooner or later, everybody goes kazoo."

  • 11
    The Breakfast Club
    23
    27

    Played by: Ally Sheedy

    Memorable quote: "It's kind of a double edged sword isn't it? Well, if you say you haven't, you're a prude. If you say you have, you're a slut. It's a trap. You want to, but you can't, and when you do, you wish you didn't, right?"

  • 12
    Ferris Bueller's Day Off
    11
    9

    Played by: Jennifer Grey

    Memorable quote: "Maybe I'm overreacting. Maybe Ferris isn't such a bad guy... But still, why should he get to do whatever he wants, whenever he wants? Why should everything work out for him? What makes him so god d*mn special? Screw him."

  • 13
    Weird Science
    10
    9

    Played by: Kelly LeBrock

    Memorable quote: "So, what would you little maniacs like to do first?"

  • 14
    23
    27

    Played by: Macaulay Culkin

    Memorable quote: "This house is so full of people it makes me sick. When I grow up and get married, I'm living alone."

  • 15
    The Breakfast Club
    12
    12

    Played by: Emilio Estevez

    Memorable quote: "We're all pretty bizarre. Some of us are just better at hiding it, that's all."

  • 16
    Planes, Trains and Automobiles
    19
    23

    Played by: John Candy

    Memorable quote: "The last thing I want to be remembered as is an annoying blabbermouth!"

  • 17
    Uncle Buck
    12
    14

    Played by: John Candy

    Memorable quote: "We've done the battle of the wills. The deck's stacked in my favor. You're just gonna lose again."

  • 18
    The Breakfast Club
    16
    19

    Played by: Molly Ringwald

    Memorable quote: "Do you know how popular I am? I am so popular. Everybody loves me so much at this school."

  • 19
    Planes, Trains and Automobiles
    13
    18

    Played by: Steve Martin

    Memorable quote: "As much fun as I've had on this little journey, I'm sure one day I'll look back on it and laugh."

  • 20
    Sixteen Candles
    6
    8

    Played by: Michael Schoeffling

    Memorable quote: " I want a serious girlfriend. Somebody I can love, that's gonna love me back. Is that psycho?"

  • 21
    Sixteen Candles
    9
    13

    Played by: Gedde Watanabe

    Memorable quote: "What's happenin', hot stuff?"

  • 22
    Pretty in Pink
    13
    21

    Played by: Molly Ringwald

    Memorable quote: "If somebody doesn't believe in me, I can't believe in them."

  • 23
    Sixteen Candles
    8
    13

    Played by: Anthony Michael Hall

    Memorable quote: "Can I borrow your underpants for 10 minutes?"

  • 24
    Ferris Bueller's Day Off
    9
    15

    Played by: Mia Sara

    Memorable quote: "Oh, he's very popular Ed. The sportos, the motorheads, geeks, sluts, bloods, wastoids, dweebies, dickheads - they all adore him. They think he's a righteous dude."

  • 25
    Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, Home Alone
    10
    18

    Played by: Daniel Stern

    Memorable quote: "I hope your parents got you a tombstone for Christmas!"