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Genres: Crime , Drama , Thriller
Actors: James Belushi , Louis Gossett Jr. , Rae Dawn Chong , Michael Wright , J.J. Cohen , Esai Morales , Troy Winbush , Jacob Vargas , Thomas Ryan , Reggie Johnson , Kelly Jo Minter , Ruth Beckford , Julian Brooks , Joan Valderrama , Rick Hamilton
Director: Christopher Cain
Country: United States
Year: 1987
IMDB Rating: 5.9/10 (4586 votes)

Rick Latimer is a teacher who gets a job as the principal of a school with a very bad reputation. In fact, his transfer there is a kind of punishment because he beat his wife’s boyfriend. So, Rick finds himself in a school where drugs, knives and guns are very usual things…

Film Review

Newly divorced drunken looser (Belushi) is transfered to an inner city High School as principal of classes of derelict youth: punishment for beating the crap out of his ex's new boyfriend at a local bar. Forgoes character development in favor of two word mantras and over the top action sequences (some exciting, some not). The dialogue is mostly cliché and performances mostly hammy and unremarkable. Most character drama introduced at the beginning of the picture (particularly Belushi's) is never resolved and quietly goes away by the middle of the movie as it builds towards the expected violent climax. Still, there are some rousing and humorous action sequences and a few good one liners, but Michael Wright (of HBO's Oz) is the real star here who steals the show in his typically sullen-turn-electrifying fashion as the drug dealing self-proclaimed King of the school. Sounds silly, but as soon as he walks on screen you believe him.

Rick Latimer (James Belushi) is a high-school teacher with some social issues. Hard drinking and soon to be divorced, Latimer flies of the handle when he spies his ex out having a drink in a bar with another man. Up before the school board, who have tired of his combustible attitude, Latimer is informed that he has finally got the Principal position he has long since courted. Trouble is is that it is at Brandel High, a notoriously troubled school where violence and crime are part of the curriculum. Taking up an attitude of fighting fire with fire and working from his motto of "No More," Latimer hopes to bring order and respect to the school. But with only Security guard Jake Phillips (Louis Gossett Jr) as an ally and the thuggish school kingpin Victor Duncan (Michael Wright) after his blood, Latimer will do well to just survive the first week.The formula of such movies like The Principal is now seen as old hat, post the release of Christopher Cain's movie you can trace …

The Principal (1987) was another star vehicle for James Belushi. This fun film is Blackboard Jungle mixed with Class of 1984. The film is filled with a lot of the minor stars of this era such as Lou Gossett Jr., Rae Dawn Chong, Esai Morales and Kelly Jo Minter to name a few.J.B.stars as a washed out High School Prep teacher who’s personal life begins to fall apart. He snaps one day and his immediately canned. That is until he’s given a second chance. He’s appointed Principal at a local rundown high school. During his tour he plots out away to change not only the school but his own life around. A nice movie in the vein of Lean On Me. Who am I kidding, this is a bone crunching exploitive film that features all of the things that we love about these type of movies. If this movie was made today it would be a P.G.-13 flick. Not a classic but a nice exploitive affair.Recommended.

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