American Graffiti Review

With college so nigh, I am doing what probably all my other colleagues are doing right now, fretting about the uncertain future and remembering the days of stability and security of high school. While on this futile journey of nostalgia, I have come across a truth about myself which on the whole doesn’t seem to fit with the perception I have of myself as a person. What I have realized is I don’t miss high school. One bit.

Today, I visited my school for a reunion of sorts. As I went through this swarm of people who I had spent almost twelve years of life with, I have never felt so alienated in my entire life. Adults reminisce about high school quite fondly, some wishing more than anything else to go back to those days. On the contrary, I realize what an exercise in futility it all was – wasting time learning stuff I would never use, making friends who haven’t had half the decency to call me in almost three months. But, there is something valuable that lingers on – moments.

Moments that I have collected throughout my school years are treasures for when every single one of them was materializing, it felt as if my life wouldn’t be the same after them. That’s what makes American Graffiti so relatable in contrast to Dazed & Confused. Coming from a country where parents are more conservative than religions in question, the focus Lucas has on how the characters consider a fleeting image of a beautiful blonde whispering something a life-changing moment really hits me.

The reason why American Graffiti seems so endearing is without a doubt its characters, all seemingly clueless about their life. When it ended, there was nothing more I wanted to do than go to these and characters and whisper in their ears that they would have all the perspective they want in a month or two.

Maybe this isn’t much of a review, but it should read as one, a highly positive one considering how personal the impact of this movie is. And in the end, Lucas leaves us with a word of wisdom. For me, it was that nostalgia is a dirty liar that insists things were better than they. For lots of others, it was that nostalgia is an ephemeral composition of disjointed memories. Basically saying, if you are on a date, and you grin while your girlfriend looks grim when the credits roll, you guys have some serious thinking to do.




  1. As I get older I find my contact with high school friends has become less and less. Maybe that’s because most of them never got more than 50 or 60 miles from home. (I’m 350 and its not near far enough.) But I do enjoy the nostalgia of watching movies taking place when I was young. (Although my era was from the movie “Dazed and Confused”…) This movie is still good every time I watch it. Even though I hadn’t even reached my first birthday when the events in the movie are supposed to happen.

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  2. I think that the people who look back on high school as the best point in their lives probably have led disappointing lives. The people who I know who are happy and have a healthy attitude toward life have an attitude similar to yours. High school was no paradise, just a collection of experiences good and bad that you have to get through to get to where life really starts. American Graffiti does a really good job at capturing that transition between getting through it and where your life really begins. Interesting thoughts. Thank for joining the blogathon, Chris

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