One popular fan theory for Ferris Bueller’s Day Off mirrors Fight Club’s infamous imagined person plot twist – but with Ferris and Cameron.
A popular fan theory for Ferris Bueller’s Day Off indicates an all-in-one’s-head Fight Club twist for Ferris (Matthew Broderick) and Cameron Frye (Alan Ruck). Ferris Bueller’s Day Off revolutionized the teen 80s movies from John Hughes, giving teenagers a way to act like free adults and truly escape the harrowing aspects of family conflicts and teenage responsibilities. The film premiered in 1986, one year after Hughes’ teen dramedy The Breakfast Club – another one-day story of teenagers reckoning with their expectations and strained familial relationships.
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off follows three teenagers who leave behind all their responsibilities and go on a wild adventure as they skip school on a beautiful Chicago day. Ferris, the most popular guy in high school – and a clever mastermind – devises schemes where he convinces his weary friend Cameron and go-with-the-flow girlfriend Sloane Peterson to go on amazing excursions with him, all the while being separately pursued by his sister Jeanie (Jennifer Grey) and Dean of Students Ed Rooney (Jeffrey Jones).
Click the button below to start this article in quick view.
David Fincher’s thriller Fight Club has one of the most iconic twists in cinema history: Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) is revealed to have been a figment of The Narrator’s (Edward Norton) imagination the entire time – a reflection of the person The Narrator wishes he could be. One theory for Ferris Bueller suggests a similar dynamic, where Ferris is only a figment of Cameron’s imagination, someone he wishes he could be, and the day is Cameron’s dream of escaping his complicated home life.
Cameron tends to be a bit reserved in life, much more grounded in the darker parts of reality than Ferris, who has a perfect relationship with his parents and is loved by everyone who meets him (besides his sister). The theory suggests Ferris is what Cameron wishes he could be, with all his charisma, confidence, likability, and worry-free nature. Cameron is really the only character who openly struggles with his home life, constantly worrying about his father figuring out he stole his red Ferrari. Ferris may have been an internal way for Cameron to finally come to terms with confronting his parents and learning to deal with his resentments, as he does in his last scene.
One piece of evidence that works for the theory is that Cameron is supposed to be really sick at the beginning of Ferris Bueller, which is originally why he tells Ferris he can’t come. Suddenly, Cameron loses all of his symptoms when he goes out with Ferris – possibly because it was all a sickness-induced hallucination. Another major piece of evidence is that their one-day adventure seems extremely far-fetched to all be done in one afternoon. They go to a baseball game, restaurant, museum, pool, parade, and back to the Chicago suburbs in the course of less than a school day. It may just be Cameron’s unreasonable dream of what he envisions a perfect day of escape would be like.
The Ferris Bueller theory definitely holds water when considering Cameron’s depression and the ridiculousness of the number of events that occur in one afternoon. On the other hand, there are a few points that work against the theory. For one, what would be the point of Ferris’s family, notably his sister, and Rooney causing issues throughout the day? It may be that Cameron has invented imaginary obstacles to their great day, making the successful pull-off of the heist that much more incredible. Ferris’s parents could also represent how Cameron wishes his parents were – caring, doting, supportive, and unified.
Next: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off Soundtrack: Every Song In The Movie
God Of War: Ragnarok Might Make Atreus Fully Playable
About The Author