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The Substitute (1996)

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After a botched mission in Cuba, professional mercenary Shale and his crew Joey Six, Hollan, Rem, and Wellman head home to Miami, Florida, where Shale is reunited with his fiance Jane ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Jonathan Shale
... Joey Six
... Hollan
... Rem
... Wellman
Ana Azcuy ... TV Announcer
... Jane Hetzko
... Mr. Darrell Sherman
... Jerome Brown (as Sharron Corley)
... Rodriguez
... Tay
... Juan Lacas
... Principal Claude Rolle
... Janus Showreel Narrator
... Matt Wolfson
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Storyline

After a botched mission in Cuba, professional mercenary Shale and his crew Joey Six, Hollan, Rem, and Wellman head home to Miami, Florida, where Shale is reunited with his fiance Jane Hetzko, who is a history teacher at Columbus High School in Miami. Some of Jane's students happen to be members of a street gang known as the "Kings of Destruction" (KOD), led by Juan Lacas, who has been terrorizing Jane. After Jane's kneecap is broken by a big seminole named Bull, she tells Shale that she believes Lacas ordered the attack, so Shale goes undercover as Jane's substitute, and initially, Jane has no idea that Shale is doing this. At the school, Shale meets principal Claude Rolle, librarian Hannah Dillon, and english and drama teacher Darrell Sherman. It turns out that Lacas is one of Jane's students. As Shale investigates the attack on Jane, he discovers that drugs are being circulated into the school. Shale even investigates local drug kingpin Johnny Glades, who may or may not have someone... Written by Todd Baldridge

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The most dangerous thing about school used to be the students. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence, language and brief nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

19 April 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El sustituto  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,096,833, 21 April 1996, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$14,752,141, 4 August 1996
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie was shot during the summer months and kids enrolled in summer classes were extras on the film. Free Papa John's pizza was served to anyone who would stay after school. See more »

Goofs

When Shale throws the fourth kid from the window in the library scene his shirt is unbuttoned and you can see that he is not wearing his bullet-proof vest. In the next shot he is taking the vest off. See more »

Quotes

Shale: Tilt those little puppies over here, baby.
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Connections

Followed by The Substitute 3: Winner Takes All (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Spirit of Love
Written by The Angel (as Angel C) and Eric Thompson
Performed by The Angel
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Great fun. Just don't take it seriously!
1 April 2003 | by See all my reviews

No matter how many times this movie is shown on cable, I still have to pause for at least a few minutes and watch portions of it. This is one of those action films that will entertain you as long as you don't try to apply logic to it or take it seriously.

The story has a professional mercenary (Berenger) and his army pals looking for work after they are cut loose from active duty following a botched mission in Cuba. Berenger doesn't want the group to get involved in running drugs for anyone, but that seems to be the only work that mercs can get these days in Florida. After Berenger's girlfriend is attacked by a ruthless street gang (led by Latin heart-throb Marc Anthony, no less) he and his pals end up trying to weed them out of the high school where she teaches. Berenger poses as her substitute teacher, and once he gets an inside look at the problems at the school, he realizes there may be more than just a gang of punks causing the trouble. It's up to Berenger and his merc pals to try and rid the school of its criminal element, and make things safer for the kids.

You cannot deny the good intentions of the plot, even if it is a bit preposterous. The acting is a little wooden in places, and the soundtrak (particularly the rap song in during the final credits) is laughable. The script has some questionable dialogue, and sometimes it can be downright amatuerish. There are plenty of shoot-outs and explosions to get the viewer's blood pumping, and it's nice to see someone make a stand in a tough environment like an inner-city high school.

This movie has spawned a few sequels which I won't comment on since I have only seen one of them, and they have no connection to the original.

Overall, this film is definitely worth watching if you are into action and revenge type themes. If you are looking for anything deep and insightful about the problems of the inner-cities, you may want to look elsewhere.

So sayeth the Hound.


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