Trapped in a school in which a gang of criminals has siezed control, a young troublemaker fights a cat and mouse battle from inside.


Roger Christian


Floyd Byars (story), Alex Siskin (story) | 2 more credits »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Patrick Stewart ... Bentley
Vincent Kartheiser ... Ozzie
Brenda Fricker ... Principal Maloney
Bradley Whitford ... Miles (as Brad Whitford)
Matt Craven ... Jake
Annabelle Gurwitch ... Helen
Jon Abrahams ... K-Dog
Katie Stuart ... Melissa
Michael MacRae ... Deroy
Callum Keith Rennie ... Ollie
Earl Pastko Earl Pastko ... Captain Jankel
Jason Schombing ... Marvin
Michael David Simms Michael David Simms ... Colonel Duke
David Avalon ... Ferret (as David Paul Grove)
Akiko Morison ... Janet


Oz, a rebellious teenager who just got expelled from his preppy school, returns for one final prank. But, as he goes to the basement to set things up, he stumbles upon a security consultant/former school employee who just took the entire school hostage for millions in ransom. Oz must rely on his youth and love for pranks to outwit the devious criminal mastermind. Written by Steve Richer <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The criminal mastermind of the century just met his match...

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence included in a children hostage situation, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Ozzie (Vincent Kartheiser) quotes the mock-Latin phrase "non illegitimi carborundum," which Principal Maloney (Brenda Fricker) translates as "don't let the bastards grind you down." Another version of this saying, "nolite te bastardes carborundorum," is a recurring motto in The Handmaid's Tale (2017), which stars Alexis Bledel, who married Kartheiser in 2014. See more »


One of the yellow vans used by Rafe's men to gain access to the school is seen parked by the front of the school when Ozzie drops off her sister. A couple scenes later this same van makes its entrance to the school when the security guard gets shot with a tranquilizer dart. See more »


Ozzie: K-Dog smells kinda rank.
K-Dog: Some friend.
See more »


References The Addams Family (1964) See more »


Can't Stand Up
Words by Tim Thomas
Music by Babe The Blue OX
Performed by Babe The Blue OX
Courtesy of The RCA Records Label of BMG Entertainment
See more »

User Reviews

Die Hard for beginners
16 October 2001 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

When I started watching this, I basically just had the TV on and I didn't know what it was about. After about 20 minutes you realise what it is - it's Die Hard in a School for teenagers! Kartheiser plays Bruce Willis' character with Patrick Stewart doing Alan Rickman duties. The film even has elements of the Die Hard movies - comic interplay over the radio, twisty escape plans, running down corridors and through ventilation shafts etc.

The only problem is that this is a kids movie - it's too basic for adults with too little tension or drama and it may even be a bit scary for young children. Which only leaves teenagers as it's audience. It's a shame, because this is not as bad as it sounds - it's reasonable undemanding fun. True, the action is not exactly what we've come to expect from an action movie - but for a kids version of Die Hard it's not bad!

Patrick Stewart is good as the bad guy and plays the whole thing with his tongue in his cheek - at one point in the film making his getaway wearing a Manchester United strip! The rest of the adult cast is ok (including well known faces such as Brenda Flicker and Whitford), but the weak link is unfortunately Kartheiser who, for most of the film plays it like a really annoying version of Malculy Culkin! It's unfortunate because it's hard to care about him when he's being a snotty arrogant teenager.

This won't satisfy many adults and will be too scary for kids (all the plot twists will be lost on them as well). But as a Die Hard for 12-15 year olds then this will satisfy most boys going through puberty.

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Release Date:

22 August 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Smart Alec See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,014,606, 24 August 1997

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby SR | SDDS (8 channels)


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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