Movie Reviews: Dangerous Minds




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     Hollywood (1 hr. 34 min.)
      The true story of a inner-city high school teacher based on the book My Posse Don't Do Homework.
     Michelle Pfeiffer, George Dzundza
Bottom Line:


     Michelle Pfeiffer trades glamour, i.e. her Catwoman costume, for the trenches of an urban classroom, proving ex-Marines can be compassionate in Dangerous Minds.      After 10 years of military service, Lou Anne Johnson (Pfeiffer) decides she wants to teach high school. However, she doesn't bargain for "The Academy," a tough school-within-a-school whose students, mostly Black and Latino, call her "white-bread" and are constantly threatening. Actually they're only threatening until Johnson gives a karate demonstration, and tells the class, "I'm too mean to quit and too young to retire, so sit down."
     As with all true stories, Dangerous Minds falls victim to Hollywood embellishment. In reality, most of Johnson's students were White. In the film, two of Johnson's students were pulled out of her class by their grandmother, because "an idealistic White woman can't teach Blacks". Actually the youths left school to help run the family business.
     Despite Hollywood's tampering, (by the way, the ending isn't formula.) Dangerous Minds is an entertaining retelling of To Sir With Love  and The Blackboard Jungle (Dangerous Minds has a great soundtrack, like those films.)  It's a good way to spend a Saturday afternoon.



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