August 31st is the official holiday honoring those romantics who strive to pair up the perfect couples: Matchmaker Day! And I’d be completely remiss (and, dare I say, totally buggin’?) if I didn’t take the opportunity to celebrate my favorite of all fictional matchmakers: Cher Horowitz.
In the classic romantic comedy, Cher tries her hand at matchmaking, with mixed results. Her pairing of teachers Mr. Hall and Ms. Geist may have started as a ploy for her to renegotiate a bad report card, but spark actually flew and they fell in love, truly. Win! Realizing that it made her heart happy to do good deeds, she then tried to fix up her newly made over friend Tai with Elton. That went markedly less well, since it ended with Cher being held at gunpoint. And her own play for Christian was misguided. So she was one for three–but isn’t it impressive that the one led to wedded bliss?
Sweet, smart, and laugh out loud hilarious, Clueless is one of the best films of the 90s and if you haven’t yet seen it, I urge you to rectify that immediately. Place a hold here.
If you have seen it and love it as much as I do, I recommend As If! The Oral History of Clueless as Told By Amy Heckerling, the Cast, and Crew, by Jen Chaney. With behind-the-scenes anecdotes about casting, costumes, and the screenplay, it’s a must-read.
And if you’re scoffing at Clueless for being a teen flick, it is worth mentioning that the film has the most classic of roots: Jane Austen. The film is inspired by Austen’s novel Emma, a book about a wealthy girl who vastly overestimates her matchmaking abilities and gets overly involved in the lives of others. Filled with Austen’s trademark wit, Emma is as funny as it is clever and worth a read after you watch Clueless.