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High School U.S.A. (1983)

Set in a senior high school class, J.J. pursues the girlfriend of a rival from a higher clique.

Director:

Rod Amateau
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael J. Fox ... Jay-Jay Manners (as Michael Fox)
Nancy McKeon ... Beth Franklin
Todd Bridges ... Otto Lipton
Angela Cartwright ... Miss D'Angelo
Bob Denver ... Milton Feld
Dwayne Hickman ... Mr. Plaza
Lauri Hendler ... Nadine
Dana Plato ... Cara Ames
Crystal Bernard ... Anne-Marie Conklin
Anthony Edwards ... Beau Middleton
Frank Bank Frank Bank ... Mr. Gerardi
Elinor Donahue ... Mrs. Franklin
Tony Dow ... Principal Pete Kinney
Steve Franken ... Dr. Fritz Hauptmann
David Nelson ... Mr. Krinsky, Janitor
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Storyline

Set in a senior high school class, J.J. pursues the girlfriend of a rival from a higher clique.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Voted Most Hilarious! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 October 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

High School U.S.A. See more »

Filming Locations:

Covina, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hill/Mandelker Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In a scene where Beth (Nancy McKeon) tells Jay-Jay (Michael J. Fox) that she just wants to be friends, Jay-Jay replies, "Like Wally and Lumpy... I'll pass." Tony Dow and Frank Bank, who played Wally and Lumpy on Leave It to Beaver (1957), also appear in the film. See more »

Goofs

The Trans Am switches from a 1979-81 model to a base model 1973 Firebird when it enters the construction area and in a public park staircase (note the rear quarter panel, absence of a front fender vent, and the rear bumper (after the vehicle is crashed). See more »

Quotes

Miss D'Angelo: [at cheerleading practice] Cara, a little more energy? You want us to lose to Tech?
Cara Ames: Who cares? This is so... high school.
Miss D'Angelo: Then why do it?
Cara Ames: I happen to look stunning in the uniform!
See more »

Connections

Spoofs Porky's (1981) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The beginning of the 80s teen TV movie phenomenon
20 September 2004 | by MichaelMovieLoftSee all my reviews

Come back with us now to the 1980s. While movie companies were cashing in on teen success, NBC decided to take advantage on the teen movie trend by making their own. High School U.S.A. was the beginning. It was originally a TV pilot, but you could hardly tell it was. Still, this movie featured teen stars of the time who went on to big things that included:

Michael J Fox (Family Ties), Nancy McKeon (The Facts of Life), Todd Bridges & the late Dana Plato (Diff'rent Strokes), Lauri Hendler (Gimme a Break), Crystal Bernard & Cathy Silvers (Happy Days), Anthony Edwards (who went to big things), David Packer (V), Crispin Glover (Back to the Future), and the late Tom Villard (who did many supporting & guest roles in movies and TV).

The setting is Excelsior Union High School in Missouri. JJ Manners (Fox) is sort is the somewhat leader of a group of uncool kids. He is likable, but the prep & jocks (led by Beau Middleton, played by Edwards) can't stand him or his kind. It gets even worse when JJ falls in love with Beth Franklin (McKeon), who was a zero but became part of the A-crowd when she started to date Beau.

There are many subplots as well, which as just as funny. A host of 50s & 60s TV stars show up. It is pretty interesting seeing teen stars from one generation meet up with another.

Do I think it would've worked as a TV series? Probably not. Some of the stars were involved in other TV shows and projects. It would've been impossible top bring all the cast members back. Still, it stands on its own well as a TV movie. It was probably best it ended that way as well.

It's worth a look for fans of the 80s and even fans of 50s and 60s.

Pat


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