Class of 1984

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Class of 1984
Class of nineteen eighty four.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Mark L. Lester
Produced by Merrie Lynn Ross
Mark Lester
Arthur Kent
Written by Mark L. Lester
Tom Holland
John Saxton
Starring Perry King
Roddy McDowall
Timothy Van Patten
Michael J. Fox
Lisa Langlois
Music by Lalo Schifrin
Cinematography Albert J. Dunk
Edited by Howard Kunin
Distributed by United Film Distribution Company
Release dates
  • August 20, 1982 (1982-08-20) (USA)

  • June 3, 1983 (1983-06-03) (Canada)
Running time 98 minutes
Country Canada
Language English
Budget $4,300,000 (estimate)

Class of 1984 is a 1982 Canadian action-thriller movie about a newly hired music teacher at a troubled inner city school, where students have to pass through a metal detector due to problems with gangs, drugs, and violence. It was directed by Mark L. Lester and starred Perry King as teacher Andrew Norris, Merrie Lynn Ross (who also co-executive produced) as his wife Diane Norris, Roddy McDowall as Terry Corrigan and Timothy Van Patten as Peter Stegman, the leader of the gang of thugs who terrorize the school. It was one of Michael J. Fox's early roles, before he was a well-established actor. It was a major box-office success for its time making more than 20 million dollars in the US alone on a budget of four and half million, and was the number one film in many countries worldwide on release.

The movie utilized the punk look and image that was becoming part of popular culture in the early 1980s. The movie's theme song, "I Am the Future", was performed by Alice Cooper. The film also features a performance by Canadian punk band Teenage Head.

The film begins with a warning that it is partially based on true events.

Cast[edit]

  • Timothy Van Patten as Peter Stegman, the leader of the gang and a feared figure in the school. He and his gang sell drugs, fight rival gangs, and run a small prostitution racket. He carries around a switchblade and is willing to do anything to save himself from trouble.
  • Lisa Langlois as Patsy, Stegman's girlfriend and the gang's only female member, showing some lesbian attractions.

Reception[edit]

Upon its original release, Class of 1984 was banned in several countries due to its lewd content.[1] It currently maintains a 60% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.[2]

Legacy[edit]

Comedy writer and producer Tom Scharpling has noted that Class of 1984 is one of his favorite movies. Scharpling would often reference the film on his weekly call in radio program The Best Show on WFMU.[3][4]

Sequels[edit]

The movie also had two science fiction-themed sequels that were loosely based on the original: Class of 1999 (1990) and the direct to video follow-up Class of 1999 II: The Substitute (1994), the first of which was also directed by Lester and like its predecessor, was also released via Vestron Video, while the latter was released by Vidmark Entertainment. Lionsgate released Class of 1999 on DVD September 16, 2008. They have been released on DVD in many foreign territories, such as Korea, Italy and Australia.

References[edit]

  1. ^ FilmCritic.com article: "Class of 1984."
  2. ^ Rotten Tomatoes page for "Class of 1984."
  3. ^ Recidivism page: "The Belt Brigade."
  4. ^ Recidivism page: "Philly Boy Paul."

External links[edit]