High School (2012)
The day after soon-to-be valedictorian Henry Burke (Matt Bush) takes a hit of the chronic for the first time, his school principal (Michael Chiklis) institutes a zero tolerance drug policy and administers a mandatory drug test for all students. Henry has two options: fail and lose his college scholarship, or team up with his stoner friend Breaux (Sean Marquette) to beat the system. They steal a high powered ganja from law student-turned-drug-dealer Psycho Ed (Adrien Brody) and spike the school's bake sale brownies, getting the whole school-faculty included-completely stoned out of their minds. But with the student body getting higher and higher with every brownie, and a pissed-off Psycho Ed on their tails for stealing his stash, they must find a way to keep their half-baked plan from going up in smoke. -- (C) Official Site … More
- R (for pervasive drugs and language, crude and sexual content, some nudity - all involving teens)
- Directed By:
- John Stalberg
- Written By:
- Erik Linthorst , John Stalberg , Stephen Susco
- In Theaters:
- Jun 1, 2012 Limited
- On DVD:
- Sep 4, 2012
- Box Office:
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Critic Reviews for High School
I'm betting director John Stalberg Jr. also debated calling it "Bake Sale," revolving as it does around the mass-dosing of the student body with pot brownies.
The only good news for everyone involved: The worst moment in your career is surely behind you.
It's a bit crude, a lot illogical and you might have to be in a certain state of mind to enjoy a film this silly.
High School definitely won't be everyone's flavor of pot comedy, but it's certainly a fun trip and a clever spin on the genre.
Surprisingly solid and funny... It's rare for a stoner comedy to have so much ambition.
A hot mess whose sub-par direction mostly neutralizes its fantastic comedic premise. High School is a willfully 'stupid' stoner comedy, yes, but it also illustrates the gap between stupid done right and merely indulged too far.
HIGH School isn't exactly Harold and Kumar-level genius, but it is worth the legal risk.
While the movie is insistently unfunny, it's almost tragic how badly director John Stalberg Jr. fumbles the potential for a wacked-out farce, refusing to let loose with the boys as they scramble to maintain order.
Starts with a viable premise, then veers off into something more mundane.
Low-key but amiable comedy, which borrows from many other movies, but still has its own spirit.
One of the broadest, silliest (yet somehow still endearing) stoner comedies in a while, indulging the adult members of the cast with particular gusto.
High School suffers from an increasingly stagnant, wheel-spinning midsection that triggers its transformation from passable comedy to interminable disaster.
Quickly grows old with no likable characters or anything else, much less genuine wit or humor, to engage.
It's about a 'high' school, and once you've gotten that you've pretty much figured out this stoner comedy.
W're left with poorly reasoned scenes and storylines that dangle like a pothead's unfinished sentences.
Might look better through a haze of the right kind of smoke. But unassisted it's just too sloppy and puerile to be more than sporadically funny.
Audience Reviews for High School
High School isn't funny considering it's a film about stoners. You can't smoke enough bud for this film to be funny. There are only two reasons to watch this film, Adrian Brody and Michael Chiklis. They are the only two who give out performances worth watching. They both play over the top characters. They are the only reason I stuck with the film until the end. See it if you want. I wish I would have puff - puff - passed on this bad excuse for a stoner film.More
"Future going up in smoke? Make sure it's some primo shit."
A high school valedictorian who gets baked with the local stoner finds himself the subject of a drug test. The situation causes him to concoct an ambitious plan to get his entire graduating class to face the same fate, and fail.
It's not just the film's stoner antics, but the wonderfully natural dynamic between protagonists Henry and Travis (Matt Bush and Sean Marquette) that make this film such a delight! At it's heart, that's what "High School" seems to be about: two very different guys finding friends in each other in the midst of a sticky situation. Many equally memorable moments are offered thanks to the expert talents of Michael Chiklis and Adrien Brody. Chiklis (as pompous Dr. Leslie Gordon) exudes a deliciously-villainous disdain throughout the film. His inflated sense of righteousness, and Shakespearean presence, make him a truly love-to-hate personality. As Psycho Ed, Adrien Brody is just so damn fun to watch! One moment his crazed behavior had me in a laughing fit; next, his insane anger had me scared for Henry and Travis' safety. Dr. Gordon and Ed are uniquely accomplished performances that add so much to High School's entertainment value.
I liked the premise of High School more than I enjoyed the actual product. I think the problem is simple, it's constantly wanting to combine gross out humour and old style stoner comedy but ultimately it never proves that it's pure and energetic enough for that. The incredibly poor performances and it's staggeringly cliche ridden script doesn't do it any favours and so consequently the film never really manages to express much comedic charisma at all. On a positive note I found loads of good laughs in the first half of the film, it actually appears that when the screenwriters were penning it they actually tried to make a good comedy and not your average teen comedy flick. The unknown cast do an okay job of handling the characters but the flaw in all of it is that they're never actually funny. However when it comes to Adrien Brody's character, he scores comedic timing brilliantly, more than everyone else and he plays a role that only has a very limited contribution in the film. I just laughed so hard at him, he's a great actor, and there are a handful of good jokes at the side accompanying him but that's about all there is to it. There's little you can say about High School really, apart from, it isn't very funny.
While making his first visit to high school detention, Henry(Matt Bush) reacquaints himself with Travis(Sean Marquette), a former childhood friend. After which, they share a little marijuana. And then Henry finds out it is the worst possible time to try illegal drugs for the first time when after a debacle at the spelling bee, Headmaster Gordon(Micharel Chiklis) announces drug testing for all students, which could not only ruin Henry's run at valedictorian, but also more importantly his scholarship to MIT. So, Henry and Travis hatch a scheme to get everybody at school stoned and thereby ruining the drug test results, followed by a visit to Psycho Ed(Adrien Brody) for supplies.
First off, "High School" has its heart in the right place, even if its humor is not. In general, it argues for not putting students under huge pressure by holding them to perfection, which is worse when applied to athletes who face the possibility of a 15,000 word article in Sports Illustrated if they screw up. Specifically, the movie smartly takes aim at the war on drugs and any kind of drug testing.
So, it is sad to note in the opening scene, the movie establishes exactly how crude its sense of humor is, doing little to differentiate itself from your garden vulgarity of teenage comedies, replete with contrived nudity, even with a neat turn from Adrien Brody. And while stoner logic might be fine and good in some places, it is real life logic that the movie has trouble with, as there is no way two guys could bake 1,000 brownies in a single night. In any case, it would have been more fun to see them struggle to bring their plan to fruition than its aftermath.
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