7.2/10
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245 user 124 critic

Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)

A group of Southern California high school students are enjoying their most important subjects: sex, drugs and rock n' roll.

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(screenplay), (book)
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Scott Thomson ...
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Cindy
Tom Nolan ...
Blair Tefkin ...
Pat Bernardo (as Blair Ashleigh)
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Storyline

Follows a group of high school students growing up in southern California, based on the real-life adventures chronicled by Cameron Crowe. Stacy Hamilton and Mark Ratner are looking for a love interest, and are helped along by their older classmates, Linda Barrett and Mike Damone, respectively. The center of the film is held by Jeff Spicoli, a perpetually stoned surfer dude who faces off with the resolute Mr. Hand, who is convinced that everyone is on dope. Written by Rick Gregory <rag.apa@email.apa.org>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Fast Cars, Fast Girls, Fast Carrots...Fast Carrots? See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 August 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Fast Times  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$2,545,674 (USA) (15 August 1982)

Gross:

$27,092,880 (USA)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Prior to the film's 19 August 1982 Los Angeles release, a news story reported that the 5 July 1982 Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) bulletin had granted "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" an X-rating, due to a love scene between Stacy Hamilton and Mike Damone, which featured full-frontal male nudity. As the picture was "the first major studio film in some time" to be given an X-rating, Universal agreed to edit the scene, allowing the MPAA to re-issue the film as R. Jennifer Jason Leigh explained that teenage test audiences had found the scene "too graphic," and the actress expressed her disappointment that the re-cut version eliminated the sense of awkward hesitancy between the two characters, who weren't ready for sex. See more »

Goofs

Brad's girlfriend Lisa is seen in Mr Hand's History class with Stacy. Brad's girlfriend is a Senior. She would not be in the same history class as a Freshman. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Perry's Pizza Waitress: Linda, Linda, there he is. There's that guy from the stereo store. Don't you think he looks like Richard Gere?
Linda Barrett: Did you see his cute little butt?
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Crazy Credits

Before the credits roll, brief scenes of the characters are shown listing what happened to them following the events of the movie. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Dawson's Creek: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Never Surrender
Performed by Don Felder
Written by Don Felder & Kenny Loggins
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The 80's Teen Culture at Its Finest
2 April 2004 | by (Brooklyn, NY) – See all my reviews

Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)

Cameron Crowe's script for `Fast Times at Ridgemont High' has totally held up in the nearly 20 years since it's release, in its portrayal of teenage life. Virtually plotless, the movie just follows the stories of a group of teenagers as they go about life in high school. And like so many 80's teen movies, it rightfully takes place for quite a bit of its run at the local mall. I find this movie to be extremely realistic, even in its somewhat exaggerated depictions of what some of the characters do (Jeff Spicoli ordering a pizza in the middle of class, or Charles Jefferson's winning of the football game by venting his anger at the school that supposedly trashed his car). But this is, after all, a movie, and a pretty good one too. And check out all those kick-ass 80's arcade games! *drools*

I'll try and give my best recollection of each of the main character's basic storylines. Let's see, Jeff Spicoli is the ideal surfer dude, empty-headed, sporting Hawaiian shirts, and talking in irresistible slang. He dislikes the uptightness of school, particularly personified by his history teacher, Mr. Hand. The two begin to have a battle of the wills. Brad Hamilton is a senior who goes from one fast-food job to the next, who has no idea what he is supposed to do with his life, even though everyone, including his guidance counselor, expects a lot from him. Stacy Hamilton is a guy-crazy chick who is sensitive but who wants sex and attention, leading her first into the arms of an older man, and eventually into those of Mike Damone, a cocky hustler, when the only guy who genuinely cares for her is nerdy Mark Ratner. Damone is a shady character, a charming sweet-talker who scalps tickets and does what he can for a quick buck. He tries to help Ratner score with Stacy, but then steals the girl. Ratner is an insecure nerd-type who is good at heart, who works at the mall movie theater, and who just wants his shot with Stacy. He finds himself broken-hearted when he uncovers Damone's betrayal. Linda Barrett is Stacy's best friend and confidante, a sexy, confident girl who is constantly moving from one guy to the next and sort of becomes a quasi role model for Stacy. That's the basic premise for all of what goes on.

Probably the most famous line is that uttered by Sean Penn's Jeff Spicoli: `Aloha, Mr. Hand.' I'm not sure if it's the Hawaiian talk or the idiocy of the teacher's name that has made this line so supremely quoted over the years. Anyone who has seen the movie recognizes it immediately. I can say immediately that I have never, ever seen Penn play a part like this, and I don't think I've ever seen a surfer personified with such grace. Even though the conflict between Spicoli and Mr. Hand is light-hearted, I always wanted to see them having a fist-fight in the halls. Stacy's story is actually pretty serious.she winds up being the victim of a teenage pregnancy, which is not often addressed in a teen comedy. Her eventual realization that Mark is the guy for her seems natural and not scripted. And thankfully, they're only starting to date by the end of the movie, and not getting engaged or married or something equally stupid as in some lesser movies. Damone is such a weird off-beat character, and his friendship with Ratner so unusual, that I have to give Cameron Crowe credit for making it all work. Brad seems to have the least to do with the other characters but as an unsuccessful go-getter, I can definitely relate to him.

In conclusion, this is one of my favorite 80's teen movies. It goes a lot deeper than `The Breakfast Club' and its adult characters, though not well-sculpted, are treated with more warmth and humanity than many of teen comedies. It's a required viewing for teens, young adults, and anyone with a fondness for 80's culture.

Grade: A


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