6.0/10
3,223
39 user 40 critic

Light It Up (1999)

A group of teens is bent on improving the run-down conditions of their high-school.

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5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Principal Allan Armstrong
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Capt. Monroe
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Audrey McDonald (as Vanessa L. Williams)
Gaddiel Otero ...
Arturo Orosco
Frank Dominelli ...
Sgt. Tortino
Reggie Theus ...
Intel. Officer #1
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Intel. Officer #2
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Storyline

On a winter day in a southside Queens high school, events collide and six students are suddenly in an armed standoff with the NYPD. At the school, classrooms freeze, teachers come and go, resources are scant. When a popular teacher is suspended, a few students protest. Jackson, a new security guard, gets tough. In a scuffle, Jackson's wounded with his own gun and a student takes him hostage. A few kids join in, for various reasons. An ineffective policewoman tries to mediate as the police plan an assault, the kids demand improvements to the school, the media pick up the story, and Jackson turns sympathetic. But are too many forces in motion for the students to stay in control? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

they don't want to be heroes they just want to be heard. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and violent content | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

10 November 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Generación perdida  »

Box Office

Budget:

$13,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$2,408,613 (USA) (14 November 1999)

Gross:

$5,871,603 (USA) (16 January 2000)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This is the second time in a movie that Forest Whitaker asks another man to help him urinate. This also occurred in The Crying Game (1992). See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the movie, Stephanie is tapping a purple pen on her notebook when the ceiling leaks and a close-up of her hand is shown to let us see the water. In the close-up she has a pink pen, then it cuts back to her holding the purple pen. This was fixed on the DVD but it remains on the VHS version of the movie. See more »

Quotes

Officer Dante Jackson: Come here, son.
Lester Dewitt: Don't call me son. I'm not your son.
See more »

Connections

Features The Negotiator (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

That's Real
Written by Bink (as Roosevelt Harrell), Beanie Sigel (as Dwight Grant), Az (as Anthony Cruz)
Performed by Az (as AZ) & Beanie Sigel
Produced by Bink for One Shot Deal Entertainment, Inc.
AZ appears courtesy of Yab Yum Records/Elektra
Beanie Sigel appears courtesy of Roc-A-Fella Records and The Island Def Jam Music Group
See more »

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User Reviews

brilliantly acted
18 June 2000 | by See all my reviews

"Light It Up" is smart, heart pounding and filled with suspense that will keep everyone on the edge of their seat. This is a truly smart thriller drama that takes a look at one of the biggest problems facing America.

Everything about "Light It Up" worked from the performances from relative newcomers such as Usher Raymond and Robert Ri'chard to veterans like Forest Whitaker and Vanessa L. Williams. One thing I must say about the cast of "Light It Up" they took the script and performed with the heart and intent of making this film a success.

The best thing about this movie was not the action but the message that it was trying to send the message that everyone deserves to be treated equally and with the same amount of respect.

Also, the characters were richly developed with honesty and integrity that seems to be missing from films I have been watching recently. I'm glad I got the opportunity to watch "Light It Up" because it taught me not to make judgements based upon first impressions.

Whether you like "Light It Up" or not it will touch you and move you to action. This truly is a movie that has spirit and deserves to be watched.


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