Jaime Escalante is a mathematics teacher in a school in a Hispanic neighbourhood. Convinced that his students have potential, he adopts unconventional teaching methods help gang members and no-hopers pass the rigorous Advanced Placement exam in calculus.Written by
Murray Chapman <email@example.com>
Although the film is set at Garfield High School in East Los Angeles, most of the scenes were filmed at Roosevelt High School in Boyle Heights, Los Angeles. Ironically, Roosevelt and Garfield are cross-town rival high schools. See more »
When the students are in the classroom being questioned about cheating, Pearson (Rif Hutton) can be seen in the background capping his pen twice between shots. See more »
I've seen you do a lot of underhanded tricks, but bringing your abuelita to my house at Christmas time, come on!
I need calculus to take me a good career, Johnny.
Something smells good.
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There are many films about teachers breaking through to tough students. Many are trite, sappy and formula-written. This is one of the few truly powerful films in this genre. Every member of the cast gives an incredible performance. This is particularly true of the students. Adult writers in this genre usually fail to write convincing adolescent dialogue, but the students in this film talked and acted quite convincingly. The role of the teacher was not glorified, but treated as a regular human being who was doing his best to do something good, sometimes in the right way and sometimes in the wrong way. The race subplot was powerful, but not too preachy. In short, this was an excellent and inspiring story of teachers and students overcoming their shortcomings and being the best that they could be. A stunning and vastly underrated film.
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