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School Daze

By Marshall Fine

Spike Lee's follow-up to his unlikely hit She's Gotta Have It was this ambitious--some would say too ambitious--attempt at a musical about college life. But Lee, ever the provocateur, doesn't settle for a simple college comedy. Rather, he wants to make a point about the social divisions within all-black colleges: between the socializers and the socially conscious, and between light and dark-skinned blacks. Laurence Fishburne plays a politically aware student trying to bring his fellow students together; Giancarlo Esposito plays the fraternity boss who constantly seeks to insert a wedge between the haves and have-nots. Lee himself plays a pawn in the middle, a would-be frat boy undergoing a wicked Hell Week as a pledge. The story doesn't pull together and the musical numbers--more spoof than anything else--only serve to fragment it. While it offers interesting points, it never does so in a particularly cohesive way.


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Buy this VHS movie from! (Click here!)Buy this DVD from! (Click here!)Buy this soundtrack from! (Click here!)Rated RNot on an American Film Institute 100 list

Director: Spike Lee

Stars: Laurence Fishburne, Giancarlo Esposito, Tisha Campbell, Joe Seneca, Art Evans

Released: February 12, 1988

Availability: DVD VHS CD

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