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Rusty James: Hey man, I really dig the colors.
Rumblefish is a coming of age novel by S.E Hinton, and the sequel to her first classic, The Outsiders, although the links between the two are slight.
The plot concerns Rusty James, an Emo Teen on the inside, ruthless gangster on the outside, who is constantly trying to live up to the reputation of his older brother, The Motorcycle Boy who has grown bored with life and is, ironically, trying to escape from the reputation he has created. When The Motorcycle Boy comes back to town after several months on the road, Rusty James world comes crashing down as he comes to terms with the fact that his brothers violent lifestyle is something that he can never have, and that he must rise above the only world he has ever known in order to prove himself the man he's always wanted to be, which means letting go of his brother.
Was made into a strange, black and white feature film by Francis Ford Coppola, written largely by S.E Hinton herself. Bashed by critics on its release for being confusing, and hugely unconventional, the film is now considered something of a cult classic, with many modern critics preferring it to the first film, The Outsiders. The film starred Matt Dillon, Mickey Rourke, Diane Lane, Nicolas Cage, Vincent Spano, Diana Scarwid and Dennis Hopper.
Rumblefish contains examples of:
- Adults Are Useless
- Alternate Character Interpretation: Is Rusty James a misplaced Holden Caulfield or a genuinely brilliant person whose intelligence is undermined by his relentless quest to be like his brother?
- Big Brother Worship: Oh so much.
- Bottle Fairy: Rusty James's father.
- Cloudcuckoolander: The Motorcycle Boy.
- Crowning Moment of Awesome: The Motorcycle Boy breaking every bone in a guy's body by ramming him with his motorbike.
- Crowning Music of Awesome: The film features a stellar soundtrack by Stewart Copeland of The Police.
- Downer Ending: At least, the book.
- Emo Teen: Rusty James, and his brother to an extent.
- Everyone Is Jesus in Purgatory: The Motorcycle Boy is Jesus. Consider the final moments of the film, when he sacrifices himself allowing his brother to escape to California, and far away from the unnamed town. Or should I say limbo?
- However, in the book, Rusty James is arrested and unable to save the fish; they die on the floor.
- Heroic Sacrifice
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: The Motorcycle Boy and, at least at the beginning, Rusty James.
- Rule of Symbolism: The titular Rumblefish in the film are the only things in colour.
- Suicide by Cop: Somewhat. The Motorcycle Boy.
- Tear Jerker
- The Film of the Book: Not as faithful as the film of The Outsiders, but stunningly adapted nonetheless.