11 movie slackers who turned lazy into an artform
Ferris Bueller

It seems every calendar date going has some kind of arbitrary appreciation for something attached to it these days, and while we’re for any excuse to write about ten-pin bowling, today’s cause is something we can really, half-heartedly get behind.

That’s because today is National Laziness Day. And with most of us enjoying a bit of a case of the Mondays, we’re really feeling the theme.

So in honour of taking it easy, we’ve donned our best pyjamas, cracked open a beer and dictated this list to our computer. Here’s eleven slacker inspirations from the movies to help you really make the most of doing nothing. Party on!

Dewey Finn

School of Rock (2003)

Dewey Finn School of Rock

Looking to make a quick buck after his bandmates kick him out of the group, Dewey takes on a temp-teachers job in the guise of his flatmate Ned Schneebley (it’s pronounced “Schnayblay”).

Rule 1 of slackerdom states you must never take on employment, but Finn dodges this with no prior training, and uses the opportunity to teach a class full of school children how to win a Battle of the Bands competition. Rock and roll.

The Dude

The Big Lebowski (1998)

The Dude Big Lebowski

The quintessential movie slacker, The Dude’s laid-back charm is one that’s been oft imitated, though never bettered.

With white Russian (made with fresh cream) firmly in hand throughout, he does surprisingly manage to get quite a bit done during the course of the Coen Brothers’ classic: botching a kidnapping-ransom drop-off, getting kidnapped, sleeping with an avant-garde artist. And lots of bowling of course.

Ben Stone

Knocked Up (2007)

Ben Stone Knocked Up

Ben Stone’s got it all. A successful company that details the whens and where of nudity in all your favourite movies (until, somebody points out that idea is already a thing), and a great bunch of friends to sit around and smoke weed with. All the fun, no responsibilities.

So when he and Kathryn Heigl share a drunken night of passion and the real world suddenly catches up to Ben in the form of a tiny human, he must prove that you can slack off responsibly.

Peter Bretter

Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008)

Forgetting Sarah Marhall sweatpants

For the most part, Peter Bretter is on the right path out of slackerdom during Forgetting Sarah Marshall. He takes an impulsive trip to Hawaii to try to get over the memory of his ex, and things seem to be working out well. That is until, he bumps into said ex, and her new rock star boyfriend Aldous Snow (Russel Brand).

One explanation to him being dumped in the first place is his lazy habits, including this scene – which proves that spending a week in your comfiest trackies doesn’t look quite as cool from an outside perspective. Let’s be honest though: we’ve all spent a week like this before.

Jeff Spicoli

Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)


Sean Penn dons his best slacker outlook and channels it through Jeff Spicoli in Fast Times At Ridgemont High, with a character who is only about the good times and the easy living.

He spends almost all of his time hanging out with a couple of pals (played by Eric Stoltz and Anthony Edwards) though we never hear of their names. Spicoli probably doesn’t have time to worry about the finer details like people’s names.

David Wooderson 

Dazed And Confused (1993)

David Wooderson Dazed & Confused

Richard Linklater’s a bit of a pro when it comes to writing slacker characters (three of his films make this list), and David Wooderson is one of his finest creations yet. “That Old Guy Who Hangs Around With High Schoolers” (and we all know/knew one), Wooderson doesn’t hang out with people much younger than him out of choice, but more out of lazy necessity.

His inner slacker asks why bother meeting people his own age, when he can just hang out with those already around him. The character also gave birth to actor Matthew McConaughey’s now famous “alright, alright, alright!

Wayne Campbell and Garth Algar

Wayne’s World (1992)

Wayne's World Screengrab

This duo’s day job is hosting their own public access TV show in a parent’s basement. The show – Wayne’s World – is mostly about rock music, babes (schwing!) and people who live in the area. It’s hardly the most demanding of ventures.

So when network executives come chasing and get in the way of Wayne pursuing new found love Cassandra (“she will be mine, oh yes”) the duo must try their best to “party on”.

Bill Preston and Ted Logan

Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989)


How Bill and Ted never got into a media brawl with the above pals a la Blur v Oasis is beyond us, such is the similarity between their laid back slacker characters.

Perhaps it was the fantastical time travelling in Excellent Adventure that ruled the two comedies were different enough, but Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter’s dumb teens using a time machine to cheat on a history test has to be the most ingenious workaround to a problem we’ve heard.

Ferris Bueller

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)

Ferris Bueller

When you’ve got a whole film dedicated to the story of how good you are at bunking off school, you know you’re doing something right in the slacker department.

Ironically, Bueller goes to great efforts to remain out of class as he is hounded by school principal Rooney (Jeffrey Jones) through the streets of Chicago, aided by a “borrowed” Ferrari.

Bonus: Everyone in Slacker (1991)

Slacker Movie

Richard Linklater directs once more with this film (his debut feature) that follows the life and times of a bunch of dissenfranchised youngsters in the Austin, Texas area over a period of 24 hours. It flits from scenario to scenario, in a manner that is sure to connect with the most procrastinating of slackers.

We meet musicians, students, street people and general eccentrics from all walks of life from a subculture of bored laziness, including a girl desperate to make a buck or two selling what she claims to be Madonna’s pap smear. Nice.