High School #MovieReview

Film 224 in the “1001 Films to See Before You Die” challenge is 1968’s “High School”. This Frederick Wiseman documentary is about a typical day for a group of students at Northeast High School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Ever wanted a reminder what it was like to go to school every Monday to Friday? Well this is the film for you. Who was the target audience for this? Clearly not those who are in school. This film has a bad obsession of doing close-ups on anyone and anything. One minute it’s a close-up on the Spanish teacher the next is a close-up of the gym teacher sending a victim of bullying to detention for refusing to take gym. There’s not a whole lot else left to say. It’s a film about life in school. There’s a lot of people who say this is a fantastic watch. I don’t know what drugs they were on in the late 60’s but they clearly haven’t watched it in 2015. That or I need to rewatch it while stoned and high on LSD while dressing like a hippy. Overall, this is really boring to watch. In 2012, Frederick Wiseman had this to say about the film, “I have an obligation to the people who have given me permission [to film them] not to simplify the material in the service of some personal ideology which they may not share.” Wiseman would go on to make a sequel, 1994’s “High School II” which looks at life in school at New York’s Spanish Harlem. If you have seen this film then let me know what you thought of it in the comments. Here is what I managed to say while watching 1968’s “High School”


Film – High School
Year – 1968
Director – Frederick Wiseman
Written by – Federick Wiseman
IMDb Rating – 7.7/10
My Rating – 1/10
Length – 75 min (1h 15min)
Genre – Documentary

We open with “Sitting on the dock on the bay”
Welcome to Northeast High School in Philadelphia
What are the chances one of these students is late?
Why do we need a close up of everyone
Now the cameraman is more focused on the Spanish teacher’s ass
Time for music class
Stop trying to fake out of gym
Well…He’s been suspended
Meanwhile in French class
Now I’m in the principle’s office who talk about a girl getting an E but everyone else gave her an A
Well… This is boring
Again with the close-up of everyone’s faces
Back in gym and someone refuses to take gym because he’s being bullied
And he ends up in detention
I am skipping a lot just to get through this
Meanwhile at the girls gym
English class and everyone is asleep
Well… there’s nothing else left to say


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