Dangerous Minds

Imagine a west-coast Blackboard Jungle 40 years later, with Michelle Pfeiffer in the Glenn Ford part, a liberal high school teacher trying to get through to inner-city kids, and you’ll get a pretty good idea of what this is like. Adapted by Ronald Bass from Louanne Johnson’s book My Posse Don’t Do Homework and directed by John M. Smith, best known for The Boys of St. Vincent, it’s another indication (cf Operation Dumbo Drop) that old-fashioned 50s liberalism may be making a comeback in Hollywood movies. Though it lacks the sensational pizzazz of Blackboard Jungle, the politics here are arguably somewhat better, and the supporting castGeorge Dzundza, Courtney P. Vance, Robin Bartlett, Beatrice Windeisn’t bad either. Elaine May, incidentally, did an uncredited rewrite of the script. (JR)

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