School Ties (1992) - Rotten Tomatoes

School Ties (1992)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

School Ties Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

An assemblage of young Hollywood actors poised for stardom marked this tale of anti-Semitism at a 1950s prep school. Brendan Fraser stars as David Greene, a working-class Jewish quarterback from Scranton, Pennsylvania, who is offered a senior year scholarship to a prestigious New England academy. It's David's ticket to an Ivy League education and a way out of his Rust Belt hometown, but there's one condition: the school's elders ask him to be discreet about his religion. At first willing to do so, David struggles with his silence about his faith as his popularity grows. David strikes up a friendship with his roommate Chris Reece (Chris O'Donnell) and a possible romance with Sally Wheeler (Amy Locane), a student at a nearby girls' school. When jealous classmate Charlie Dillon (Matt Damon) learns David's secret at an alumni party, he exposes the school's new gridiron hero, and David faces the full force of religious intolerance from the prejudiced WASP institution. Also featuring early performances from Ben Affleck, Anthony Rapp, and Cole Hauser, School Ties was loosely based on the real-life experiences of producer Dick Wolf, creator of TV's popular series Law & Order. ~ Karl Williams, Rovimore
Rating: PG-13
Genre: Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Darryl Ponicsan, Dick Wolf, Norman Steinberg, Norman Steinberg
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jun 29, 1999
Paramount Home Video


Brendan Fraser
as David Greene
Matt Damon
as Charlie Dillon
Chris O'Donnell
as Chris Reece
Randall Batinkoff
as Rip Van Kelt
Andrew Lowery
as 'Mack' McGivern
Cole Hauser
as Jack Connors
Amy Locane
as Sally Wheeler
eljko Ivanek
as Mr. Cleary
Ben Affleck
as Chesty Smith
Anthony Rapp
as Richard 'McGoo' Coll...
Peter Donat
as Headmaster Dr. Bartr...
Kevin Tighe
as Coach McDevitt
Michael Higgins
as Mr. Gierasch
Ed Lauter
as Allan Greene
John Cunningham
as Grayson Dillon
Elizabeth Franz
as Jane Dillon
Matt Hofherr
as Gray Dillon
Dan Desmond
as Mr. Wheeler
Claudia Everest
as Mrs. Wheeler
Leon B. Stevens
as Tom Keating
Sean Kent
as Keller
James Quinn
as 1st Boy
Will Lyman
as Swanson
William Meisle
as Winchester Headmaste...
Susan Johnston
as Mary Ellen
Gregory Chase
as Cal Reynolds
Alice Duffy
as Chaperone
Thomas Rhett Kee
as Boy in Shower
Jane Nichols
as Swimming Coach
Colin F. Lydon
as Boy in Dining Room
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for School Ties

Critic Reviews for School Ties

All Critics (37) | Top Critics (9)

This is a bewildering mixture of fairly accomplished storytelling, awkward contrivances in the script, and lies in the overall conception so egregious they undercut any pretensions the film might have to social seriousness.

Full Review… | October 15, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

More notable perhaps for a roster of future stars and Oscar winners than for its unexceptional plot, this well executed film nevertheless has its charms.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

School Ties has a leafy, genteel look that is somehow less than convincing, perhaps because the hairdos are too tidy and the resemblances to other prep-school stories too clear.

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

Good intentions go for naught as director Robert Mandel (F/X) pounds home every contrivance in the script by Darryl Ponicsan (Taps).

May 12, 2001
Rolling Stone
Top Critic

Director Robert Mandel, best known for the flashy techno-thriller F/X, brings a surprisingly sensitive touch to this earnest story of intolerance.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Washington Post
Top Critic

There's a dramatic imbalance to Dick Wolf and Darryl Ponicsan's screenplay.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Washington Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for School Ties


an interesting coming of age film featuring a host of up and comers since turned big stars. the film deals well with the theme of prejudice, and walks the line well in portraying the pressure that many "privileged" kids are under. some of the sympathies that the writers tried to portray fell fairly flat, and the logic behind david greene doesnt hold up well enough upon scrutiny, but the major point was made effectively and the story was very engaging.

danny d

Super Reviewer


Cast: Brendan Fraser, Chris O'Donnell, Matt Damon, Randall Batinkoff, Ben Affleck, Amy Locane, Cole Hauser, Andrew Lowery, Anthony Rapp, Zeljko Ivanek, Peter Donat, Kevin Tighe, Michael Higgins, Ed Lauter, Peter McRobbie

Director: Robert Mandel

Summary: David Greene (Brendan Fraser), a working-class Jewish teen, receives a football scholarship to a prestigious prep school in the 1950s. But in favor of fitting in, he chooses to hide his religion from his wealthy, prejudiced classmates. Greene soon becomes the team's star player and wins the attention of a beautiful debutante (Amy Locane). But when his heritage is revealed, his schoolmates' deep-seated hatred rises to the surface.

My Thoughts: "This film is a good example of how people label other people and put them into certain categories whether it be of religion, skin color, sexuality, or their nationality. This film focuses on a Jewish boy, but it speaks for everything I listed. You cannot, as they say, judge a book by it's cover. That is brilliantly shown in this film. With David withholding his religious beliefs, he is welcomed in as one of their own. But once he is outed by a fellow 'friend'(I use that term loosely), he is shunned by them all (well almost all). So instead of him being that person they had come to know him as, he was now in that labeled box of ignorance. You cannot judge a person or persons by a religion, race, nationality, sexuality, or by their appearance. They do not make up for that one person at fault. This film has great acting by all the well known actors of today. Great to go back and see them before they were such big stars. This has to be my favorite performance from Brendan Fraser. Great job by the entire cast. If you haven't seen it, then you should."


Super Reviewer

The Sad thing is that there is still that hate against Jews going around. Outstanding peformance by Brendan Fraser

Wahida K

Super Reviewer

School Ties Quotes

– Submitted by Jesse K (2 years ago)

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