The “Dobler” Effect


“I don’t want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don’t want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don’t want to do that.” ~ Lloyd Dobler

Lloyd Dobler

(image credit)

I stumbled across a blog a while ago that was singing the praises of the movie “Say Anything”.   This 1989 classic has always been one of my favorite movies.  John Cusack as Lloyd Dobler was one of the most epic male movie roles of my generation.  He was a guy every guy could relate to and most girls wanted to date.

Lloyd isn’t the macho, overly muscled guy oozing with too much bravado and too little sense.  He doesn’t say things just because he thinks you want to hear them.  What he does say is anything that comes into his mind.  Girls watching him on the big screen fell in love with that charming albeit occasionally clumsy quality (see above quote about what he wants to do for a career).  But in his clumsiness, he stole the hearts of many girls, including me.

There are not many movie characters who have story lines written for them without them having some egregious character flaw to make them interesting.  Lloyd Dobler is one of those few who didn’t need the flaws.  What made him interesting was how wonderfully normal he was.   In 1989 we all wanted to find our own Lloyd Dobler.   I’m still looking for mine.

13 thoughts on “The “Dobler” Effect

  1. I haven’t ever seen it but I figure you must be right about him…he clearly had good musical sense (having used Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes” to express himself); plus I’m with you…I’m still looking for the “real” guy also. 🙂 p.s. I may have to make a point of seeing this movie…I’ve heard about it one too many times now.

  2. Still one of my all-time favorite movies! It was also my measuring stick in deciding whether or not to take a job. If I was required to wear a paper hat that looked like a pig, I looked for work elsewhere. And you’re so very right about what makes “Lloyd” such a memorable character; it’s that he is otherwise so UNmemorable that makes him memorable.

    My favorite line? “It’s a shame to throw away a perfectly good white boy like that…”

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