5.2/10
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Soul Man (1986)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Romance | 24 October 1986 (USA)
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To achieve his dream of attending Harvard, a pampered teen poses as a young black man to receive a full scholarship.

Director:

Steve Miner

Writer:

Carol Black

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
C. Thomas Howell ... Mark Watson
Rae Dawn Chong ... Sarah Walker
Arye Gross ... Gordon Bloomfeld
James Earl Jones ... Professor Banks
Melora Hardin ... Whitney Dunbar
Leslie Nielsen ... Mr. Dunbar
Ann Walker Ann Walker ... Mrs. Dunbar
James Sikking ... Bill Watson (as James B. Sikking)
Max Wright ... Dr. Aronson
Jeff Altman ... Ray McGrady
Julia Louis-Dreyfus ... Lisa Stimson
Maree Cheatham ... Mrs. Dorothy Watson (as Marie Cheatham)
Wallace Langham ... Barky Brewer (as Wally Ward)
Eric Schiff Eric Schiff ... Booey Fraser
Ron Reagan Ron Reagan ... Frank
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Storyline

Mark doesn't expect any problems in going to college: he and his friend have reserved places in Harvard and his parents have the money to pay for his education there. But suddenly his father's neurotic psychiatrist advises him to go on vacation in Hawaii instead of spending more money on his son. Since Mark wants to keep his lifestyle, including a fancy car and a flat shared with his friend, he seeks financial support. The only foundation which still accepts applications is for blacks only -- no problem, with lots of bronzing pills and "soul in his voice" he sets out to Harvard. Soon he has to realize that being black will cause some people to handle him differently. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Mark needs a scholarship to get into Harvard. There's one more available for a black student. The problem is Mark's not black... Yet. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 October 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Imposter See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$27,820,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

C. Thomas Howell's father, Chris Howell, did the stunts for this movie. See more »

Goofs

About fifteen minutes into the picture, Mark and Gordon are seen traveling up Mass. Ave. in Cambridge, adjacent to the Harvard campus, and suddenly, they're not on Mass. Ave. anymore, they're on Quincy St., a couple blocks away. Then, just as suddenly, they're right back on Mass Ave., again proceeding through Harvard Square, just as they were before. See more »

Quotes

Mark Watson: She told me they have support for people whose parents are poor, but not for those whose parents are assholes.
See more »

Connections

References Shaft (1971) See more »

Soundtracks

(What Did I Do to Be So) Black and Blue
By Andy Razaf, Fats Waller (as Thomas Waller), Harry Brooks
Performed by Louis Armstrong
Courtesy of CBS Records
See more »

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User Reviews

On the level of John Hughes comedies!
10 April 2002 | by KhwajSee all my reviews

I remember watching Soul Man about twelve years ago when it was first aired on TV. Crazy, hilarious, sarcastic, emotional; what the hell I could go on forever describing this film.

This is the only film besides "The Outsiders" that C. Thomas Howell played a dual role of himself and a black student impersona. Okay I can agree with some comments that movie began to over step it's bounderies with the way African American culture was dealt with, but at the smae time I felt that it was stabalized with the humour adding that extra touch rather than people taking it more "Politically correct" way.

James Earl Jones and Rae Dawn Chong both did fabulous jobs as there acting really help give their characters' some edge that made it somewhat convincing.

Overall a brilliant film. If you can try to avoid the fact that it might be cliched of dealing with racial differences in a light hearted manner. Remember this is a comedy and not something to take "SERIOUSLY".

Another quality film from the 80's to add to the hitlist.


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