director john hughes dies

John Hughes, the director responsible for generation-defining 1980s coming-of-age movies like Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club, has died in Manhattan of a heart attack. He was 59: '80s teen flick director John Hughes dies in NYC.

I'm not interested in disrespecting his memory; Hughes made movies that a lot of people -- including me -- cherish and enjoy. That said, I can't deny that I'm writing about his death her for one reason: Long Duk Dong from 1984's Sixteen Candles.

The character, played by Gedde Watanabe, is one of the most controversial, polarizing portrayals when it comes to conversations about the way Asians are represented in Hollywood. The character is over twenty-five years old, and he remains an enduring cinematic stereotype -- and a sore spot for many.

Long Duk Dong did not make life easy for a lot of people, and I'm not going to ignore that. It's a dark spot in a career that produced some great movies. I have to wonder if Hughes ever fully realized the impact and legacy of his creation.

That's all I'm going to say about that. I hate Long Duk Dong. But I am a part of the John Hughes generation, and I love The Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Weird Science and so on. For better or for worse, the eighties would not have been the same without him. Rest in peace.

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