High School High

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High School High
High school high.jpg
Directed by Hart Bochner
Produced by David Zucker
Robert LoCash
Gil Netter
Written by David Zucker
Robert LoCash
Pat Proft
Starring Jon Lovitz
Tia Carrere
Mekhi Phifer
Malinda Williams
Brian Hooks
Natasha Gregson Wagner
John Neville
Louise Fletcher
Music by Ira Newborn
Cinematography Vernon Layton
Edited by James R. Symons
Distributed by TriStar Pictures
Release date(s)
  • October 25, 1996 (1996-10-25)
Running time 86 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $21,302,121 [1] (domestic total)

High School High is a 1996 comedy film about an inner city high school in the Los Angeles, California area, starring Jon Lovitz, Tia Carrere, Mekhi Phifer, Louise Fletcher, Malinda Williams, and Brian Hooks. It is a spoof of movies concerning idealistic teachers being confronted with a class of cynical teenagers, disengaged by conventional schooling, and loosely parodies The Principal, Dangerous Minds, Lean on Me, and Stand and Deliver. It also notably parodies the LA River drag race from Grease.

Plot[edit]

The plot focuses on Jon Lovitz's character, Richard Clark, attempting to improve the school where he is teaching, which is extreme to the point that there are reserved parking spaces for SWAT team and National Guard members. He is assisted by his co-worker turned girlfriend, Victoria Chapell (Tia Carrere). Together they turn the school around in the ghetto to become a fine establishment suitable for education. In the end of the film, Evelyn Doyle (Louise Fletcher), the principal, is exposed as a drug dealer and is arrested. The main six students throughout the movie graduate (but only those six). Griff delivers the valedictorian speech, and Clark makes good on his promise to help Griff attend college. Clark becomes principal, and is in a relationship with Victoria.

Cast[edit]

  • Jon Lovitz as Richard Clark, a naive Caucasian teacher whose main goal is to help underachieving students at Marion Berry High School succeed.
  • Tia Carrere as Victoria Chapel, a fellow teacher who sympathizes with Richard.
  • Louise Fletcher as Principal Evelyn Doyle, who believes Richard will fail.
  • Mekhi Phifer as Griff McReynolds, one of Clark's students and a former gang member who aspires to graduate high school and attend college.
  • Malinda Williams as Natalie Thompson, Griff's girlfriend.
  • Guillermo Díaz as Paco de la Vega al Camino Cordoba Jose Cuervo Sanchez Rodriguez Jr., Griff's former gang partner.
  • Brian Hooks as Anferny Jefferson, one of Clark's students. He is a slightly dimwitted gang member who only knows of urban pop culture.
  • Natasha Gregson Wagner as Julie Rubels, one of Clark's students who is a teenage mother with many children.
  • Marco Rodríguez as Mr. DeMarco, a gangster who is in the midst of a shady "business" deal with Paco and another mysterious gangster known as "Mr. A".
  • John Neville as Thaddeus Clark, Richard's father.
  • Lexie Bigham as Two-Bags, a member of Paco's gang.
  • Gil Espinoza as Alonzo, a member of Paco's gang.

Release[edit]

The film opened at #2 on the weekend of October 25, 1996, behind the film Sleepers. The film remained in the top 5 for the next two weekends, making it a modest box office success.

Reception[edit]

The film received generally mixed to negative reviews upon its release. It currently holds a 13% rating of "Rotten" on the Tomatometer on Rotten Tomatoes along with a 40% rating of "Liked it" by audiences.

Soundtrack[edit]

High School High
Soundtrack album by various artists
Released September 10, 1996 (1996-09-10)
Recorded 1995-1996
Genre Hip hop, R&B
Length 78:00
Label Big Beat/Atlantic
Producer Jermaine Dupri, Carl So-Low, AllStar, Andy Blakelock, RZA, K-Def, Sean "Puff" Combs, Bob Power, Large Professor, Pete Rock, Six July, Studio Ton, De La Soul, KRS-One, Mr. Dalvin, Baby Paul, Brad Jordan
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[2]
RapReviews (7/10)[3]

The film soundtrack was released on September 10, 1996 through Big Beat Records and contained hip hop and R&B music. The album did well on the Billboard charts, making it to #20 on the Billboard 200 and #4 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums and was also certified gold by the RIAA.[4][5] In addition, five singles made it to the charts, the most successful of which was RZA's "Wu-Wear: The Garment Renaissance", which peaked at #60 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #6 on the Hot Rap Singles.[6]

No. Title Artist Length
1. "So Many Ways"   The Braxtons 3:55
2. "I Got Somebody Else"   Changing Faces 4:17
3. "Wu-Wear: The Garment Renaissance"   RZA featuring Method Man & Cappadonna 3:54
4. "Get Down for Mine"   Real Live 4:00
5. "I Just Can't"   Faith Evans 3:43
6. "Your Precious Love"   D'Angelo & Erykah Badu 4:11
7. "The Rap World"   Large Professor & Pete Rock 4:03
8. "Queen Bitch"   Lil' Kim 3:16
9. "Why You Wanna Funk?"   Spice 1, E-40 & The Click 4:08
10. "I Can't Call It"   De La Soul 3:28
11. "Bohemian Rhapsody"   The Braids 4:00
12. "High School Rock"   KRS-One 3:35
13. "Peace, Prosperity & Paper"   A Tribe Called Quest 4:01
14. "Wild Side"   Jodeci 3:45
15. "The Ultimate"   Artifacts 4:12
16. "The Next Spot"   Sadat X & Grand Puba 3:46
17. "Skrilla"   Scarface & Facemob 3:45
18. "Semi-Automatic: Full Rap Metal Jacket"   Inspectah Deck featuring U-God & Streetlife 4:01
19. "The Good, the Bad and the Desolate"   The Roots 4:06
20. "C'mon N' Ride It (The Train), Pt. 2"   Quad City DJ's 3:54
Year Title Chart positions Certifications
(sales thresholds)
U.S. U.S. R&B
1996 High School High
  • Released: September 10, 1996
  • Label: Atlantic
20 4
  • US: Gold

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?id=highschoolhigh.htm
  2. ^ Allmusic review
  3. ^ RapReviews review
  4. ^ "allmusic ((( High School High > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums )))". Retrieved May 21, 2009 (2009-05-21). 
  5. ^ "Recording Industry Association of America". RIAA. Retrieved 2011-09-16. 
  6. ^ "allmusic ((( RZA > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles )))". Retrieved May 21, 2009 (2009-05-21). 

External links[edit]