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The Skulls (2000)

PG-13  |   |  Action, Crime, Drama  |  31 March 2000 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 25,788 users   Metascore: 24/100
Reviews: 192 user | 101 critic | 24 from

Luke McNamara, a college senior from a working class background joins a secret elitist college fraternity organization called "The Skulls", in hope of gaining acceptance into Harvard Law ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Martin Lombard
Detective Sparrow
David Asman ...
Jason Pitcairn
Travis Wheeler
Dr. Rupert Whitney
Derek Aasland ...
Jennifer Melino ...
Hugh Mauberson


Luke McNamara, a college senior from a working class background joins a secret elitist college fraternity organization called "The Skulls", in hope of gaining acceptance into Harvard Law School. At first seduced by the club's trapping of power and wealth, a series of disturbing incidents, such as his best friends suicide, leads Luke to investigate the true nature of the organization and the truth behind his friends supposed suicide. He starts realizing that his future and possibly his life is in danger. Written by Kyle <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


If a secret society can give you everything you desire, imagine what they can take away. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence and brief sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

31 March 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Lobanje  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$11,034,885 (USA) (31 March 2000)


ESP 195,232,054 (Spain) (29 June 2001)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


A single person boat used for rowing is called a scull, pronounced the same as "skull". See more »


When Luc first appears in the gray shirt to challenge his soulmate it is all sweaty. Later in the scene and with the new "head" of the skulls his same gray shirt is perfectly clean. See more »


Will Beckford: If it's secret and elite, it can't be good.
See more »


Referenced in Greek: Isn't It Bro-mantic? (2009) See more »


Performed by Lorna Vallings
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User Reviews

Interesting premise, poor presentation
30 October 2000 | by (Atlanta, GA) – See all my reviews

Though it poses a good moral dilemma, `Skulls' is presented in such an implausible way as to render it crippled at birth. Luke McNamara is a small town boy of modest means attending an Ivy League institution that is never really named but is obviously Yale. He is hoping to be called for membership into the Skulls, a secret society of great status and power. Members of this society have the doors of power, wealth and influence thrown wide to them. This is a dream come true for Luke, who spends much of his time fretting over the hundreds of thousands in student loans he is incurring. When he discovers that one of the members has committed a felony, he is torn between his desire for wealth, his loyalty to a friend, and his conscience.

Writer John Pogue (`U.S. Marshals') has conjured up a good moralistic tale, but it is so full of ridiculous premises that it becomes laughable. This is supposed to be a secret society where other than the members themselves, no one knows who the members are. Yet, Pogue and director Rob Cohen present it in such a way that they may as well be advertising their identities on TV. The building where the secret meetings take place is prominently marked with a Skull, and only members have keys to the building. So, Duh, anyone seen entering the building must be a Skull. New members get brand new $50,000 automobiles and $100,000 in cash, as if no one will notice this sudden burst of good fortune. The new members are branded on their wrist and we are supposed to believe that they will never be seen by anyone without their wristwatch on. The list of inconceivability goes on ad nauseam.

The acting is generally quite good. Joshua Jackson (`Cruel Intentions', `Urban Legend') is excellent as Luke. He plays the part with just the right combination of idealistic zeal and moral grounding. He gets great support from Paul Walker (`She's All That', `Varsity Blues') as Caleb Mandrake, the spoiled rich kid trying to step out of his father's shadow. Craig T. Nelson gives a wonderfully nefarious performance as the chairman of the Skulls and Caleb's father.

Maybe secret societies exist, and maybe they don't. The fact that no one is sure indicates that if they are more than mere myths, they are a lot more secret than depicted here. I rated this film a 6/10. It is an interesting idea that loses credibility in the telling.

34 of 40 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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