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Blackboard Jungle (1955)

Approved | | Crime, Drama | 25 March 1955 (USA)
A new English teacher at a violent, unruly inner-city school is determined to do his job, despite resistance from both students and faculty.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Mr. Warneke
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Mr. Halloran
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Dr. Bradley
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Storyline

War veteran Rick Dadier is one of three new teachers hired at North Manual High School, an inner city boys school. This is his first teaching assignment, which he needs to support himself and his insecure pregnant wife, Anne. Despite Principle Warnecke's assertions to the contrary, Dadier quickly learns that the rumors of student discipline problems at the school are indeed true. The established teachers at the school try to counsel the newcomers, all inexperienced in such situations, as how best to handle the rowdy students. Regardless, Dadier tries to exert discipline in his class, which provokes a violent response. Dadier believes the student leaders against him are Artie West, but more specifically Gregory Miller, who he thinks uses the fact of being black as a means of racial provocation. Dadier has to decide either to leave and teach at a "real" school, or stay and figure out how to get through to his students. If he decides to stay, he has to figure out who the real disruptive ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Most Startling Picture In Years! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 March 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Blackboard Jungle  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,168,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$5,292,000, 31 December 1955

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$8,144,000, 31 December 1955
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Clare Boothe Luce, then U.S. Ambassador to Italy, prevented the film from being shown at the Venice Film Festival. Also, a Senate committee had decided that the film would not have beneficial effects on contemporary youth. But both incidents only served to increase publicity and ticket sales for the controversial movie. See more »

Goofs

As Mr.Dadier is talking to the detective about his attackers,a few of the students are seen entering the classroom twice. See more »

Quotes

Richard Dadier: What's your name?
Artie West: Why do you want to know?
Richard Dadier: What's your name?
Artie West: What're you picking on me for?
Richard Dadier: I'm not picking on you, I asked what's your name.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"We, in the United States, are fortunate to have a school system that is a tribute to our communities and to our faith in American youth. Today we are concerned with juvenile delinquency -- its causes -- and its effects. We are especially concerned when this delinquency boils over into our schools. The scenes and incidents depicted here are fictional. However, we believe that public awareness is a first step toward a remedy for any problem. Is is in this spirit and with this faith that BLACKBOARD JUNGLE was produced." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Studio C: Episode #2.10 (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Rock Around the Clock
Written by James E. Myers (uncredited) and Max Freedman (uncredited)
Played by Bill Haley and the Comets (as Bill Haley and His Comets)
Courtesy of Decca Records, Inc.
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The Hunter Gets Captured by the Prey.
10 October 2003 | by See all my reviews

James Dean's untimely death in September of 1955 made "Rebel Without a Cause" a booming box office and critical success. Overshadowed due to that was "Blackboard Jungle", a superior and more important film than the aforementioned "Rebel Without a Cause" (contrary to popular belief admittedly). It is New York in the mid-1950s and former military man Glenn Ford (in his greatest screen role) takes a job as a high school teacher in the inner-city. Soon it is blatantly apparent that the school is full of male thugs (most notably guys like Sidney Poitier, Vic Morrow, Paul Mazursky and even Jamie Farr) who run things with total disregard of faculty rules and policy. Ford becomes enraged and proves to be a lot tougher than originally thought. However when pregnant wife Anne Francis starts receiving anonymous phone calls and letters from one of Ford's students about a possible affair between he and one of his female co-workers, the real fireworks start. At first Ford believes that Poitier is the culprit, probably based more on race and Poitier's obvious intelligence rather than actual proof. It takes lots of time and effort, but Ford becomes determined to get through to his pupils and weed out those who are trying to impede his progress and the advancement of others at his school. "Blackboard Jungle" is another excellent piece from writer-director Richard Brooks (Oscar-nominated for writing). It is the first truly legitimate movie that dealt with 1950s teenage angst and it rises above every other movie of the genre. Ford is a revelation, once again showing that he is probably the most under-appreciated actor throughout the history of the cinema. With that said, "Blackboard Jungle" is likely best remembered as Poitier's breakthrough role, a role which ultimately led to outstanding movie after outstanding movie throughout the late-1950s and 1960s. Poitier, 28 at the time, plays much younger than he was and adds much emotion and depth to a potentially flat character. A booming rock'n'roll soundtrack and top-flight performances dominate Brooks' outstanding winner. 4.5 out of 5 stars.


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