St. Elmo's Fire (1985) - Rotten Tomatoes

St. Elmo's Fire1985

St. Elmo's Fire (1985)



Critic Consensus: St. Elmo's Fire is almost peak Brat Pack: it's got the cast, the fashion, and the music, but the characters are too frequently unlikable.

St. Elmo's Fire Videos

St. Elmo's Fire Photos

Movie Info

Featuring an ensemble full of beautiful and talented young actors, this comedy drama centers an a septet of Georgetown graduates who fret about their futures.

Watch it now


Emilio Estevez
as Kirby Keger
Rob Lowe
as Billy Hicks
Andrew McCarthy
as Kevin Dolenz
Judd Nelson
as Alec Newbary
Ally Sheedy
as Leslie Hunter
Mare Winningham
as Wendy Beamish
Joyce Van Patten
as Mrs. Beamish
Jenny Wright
as Felicia
Jon Cutler
as Howie Krantz
Matthew Laurance
as Ron Dellasandro
Gina Hecht
as Judith
Kaaren Lee
as Welfare Woman
Don Moss
as Maitre D'
Whip Hubley
as Felicia's Date
Michele Winding
as Chauffeur
Jim Turner
as Postgrad
Mario Machado
as Kim Sung Ho
Judy Kain
as Woman Banker
Seth Jaffe
as Brother-in-Law #1
Jeffrey Lampert
as Brother-in-Law #2
Jamison Anders
as Tommy Bancroft
David Lain Baker
as Jules's Date
Dean Miller
as Clayton
Daniel Eden
as Street Tough
Thom Bierdz
as Rowdy Undergrad
J.T. Solomon
as Hysterical Woman
Patrick Winningham
as The New Breed Member
Andy Scott
as The New Breed Member
Christian Iraberen
as The New Breed Member
Daniele Iraberen
as The New Breed Member
Bennet Bowman
as The New Breed Member
View All

News & Interviews for St. Elmo's Fire

Critic Reviews for St. Elmo's Fire

All Critics (44) | Top Critics (7)

These aren't characters -- they're character hooks.

January 3, 2018 | Full Review…

All speed and stylishness without a bit of emotional resonance beneath.

July 13, 2017 | Full Review…

There is an abundance of astute and knowledgeably drawn scenes with this contextually structured story. There are some biting observations of college life, with law school in particular taking some verbal jabs on the chin.

June 28, 2017 | Full Review…

St. Elmo's Fire is all about a group of recent college graduates in Washington who were always the best of friends but now are drifting apart as real life approaches, discovering various reasons why they are so individually obnoxious.

October 18, 2008 | Full Review…

Estevez and Nelson are as unappealing here as in The Breakfast Club, though in fairness they're hampered by a script that seems to despise its characters.

February 9, 2006 | Full Review…
Top Critic

An icon of the 80's.

June 19, 2003 | Rating: 3/5
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for St. Elmo's Fire

Not one I grew up with, but I have come to appreciate this later in life. A not so great 80's drama still beats most of the new ones, and I do like a lot of the cast, particularly Andrew McCarthy. I think the brat pack stuff put me off when this was popular, but it does have a bit of depth to it.

Nicki Marie
Nicki Marie

Super Reviewer

It plays like a rejected backdoor pilot for a coming-of-age prime time TV drama series, with not very interesting storylines despite the good acting - and it does not help a bit that the characters and their personal conflicts don't get enough individual screen time to fully grow on us.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer


It's really quite enjoyable - the humor, the drama - but it just doesn't make much sense to me. All these friends have such disparate personalities that there's no way they would all hang out and remain friends after college - and that's not even speaking of Wendy's completely baseless infatuation for Billy. My friend pointed out that my own circle of friends have vastly different characters, but we coexist because we've had the benefit of hanging out a lot in real life. The St. Elmo's gang are never shown "just hanging out." They're always doing something, getting into trouble, plotting grand gestures - all these huge moments of which culminates in an overwrought, melodramatic climax that of course brings them all together. The explanation of the title also doesn't hold much water.

Alice Shen
Alice Shen

Super Reviewer

St. Elmo's Fire Quotes

News & Features