8.5/10
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American History X (1998)

R | | Drama | 20 November 1998 (USA)
Trailer
2:25 | Trailer
A former neo-nazi skinhead tries to prevent his younger brother from going down the same wrong path that he did.

Director:

Tony Kaye

Writer:

David McKenna
Popularity
520 ( 44)
Top Rated Movies #39 | Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Edward Norton ... Derek Vinyard
Edward Furlong ... Danny Vinyard
Beverly D'Angelo ... Doris Vinyard
Jennifer Lien ... Davina Vinyard
Ethan Suplee ... Seth Ryan
Fairuza Balk ... Stacey
Avery Brooks ... Dr. Bob Sweeney
Elliott Gould ... Murray
Stacy Keach ... Cameron Alexander
William Russ ... Dennis Vinyard
Guy Torry ... Lamont
Joe Cortese ... Rasmussen
Jason Bose Smith Jason Bose Smith ... Little Henry (as Jason Bose-Smith)
Antonio David Lyons ... Lawrence
Alex Sol ... Mitch McCormick
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Storyline

Derek Vineyard is paroled after serving 3 years in prison for brutally killing two black men who tried to break into/steal his truck. Through his brother's, Danny Vineyard, narration, we learn that before going to prison, Derek was a skinhead and the leader of a violent white supremacist gang that committed acts of racial crime throughout L.A. and his actions greatly influenced Danny. Reformed and fresh out of prison, Derek severs contact with the gang and becomes determined to keep Danny from going down the same violent path as he did. Written by Nitesh D.(nmxpa7@msn.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

neo nazi | prison | hatred | racism | jail | See All (306) »

Taglines:

Er ist sein bruder. Und sein opfer. (He's his brother. And his victim.) (German DVD) See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for graphic brutal violence including rape, pervasive language, strong sexuality and nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The character Derek Vinyard is based on real life ex-skinhead Frank Meeink. See more »

Goofs

The coffee shop Derek and Danny walk to at the end is on the corner of Fairfax and Wilshire, or about a four hour walk from Venice where they live. See more »

Quotes

Danny Vinyard: [Narrating his essay] So I guess this is where I tell you what I learned - my conclusion, right? Well, my conclusion is: Hate is baggage. Life's too short to be pissed off all the time. It's just not worth it. Derek says it's always good to end a paper with a quote. He says someone else has already said it best. So if you can't top it, steal from them and go out strong. So I picked a guy I thought you'd like. 'We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have ...
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Alternate Versions

The New Line Cinema DVD features 3 deleted scenes:
  • A scene in which an elderly black woman is harassed and made to cry on the boardwalk by a bunch of teenage skinheads.
  • A scene after the "party", in which Cameron and Seth go to a café and discuss Derek's change. They then harass a black guy/white girl couple, and then leave. A car is waiting outside, in which several black men watch them leave, before going after them. One black man inside the car remarks "Somebody's gonna get their ass whipped." The aftermath is not shown, but we later learn that Cameron and Seth were attacked.
  • A brief scene in the café near the end in which Derek winks at a little black girl and asks her if he looks okay.
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Soundtracks

Battle Hymn of the Republic
(circa 1856) (uncredited)
Music by William Steffe
Lyrics by Julia Ward Howe (1862)
Sung a cappella by Ethan Suplee with modified lyrics
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User Reviews

 
A masterpiece! Truly one of the best film I have ever seen
26 January 2006 | by exa56See all my reviews

I have been wanting to see this movie for a long time, since my English teacher mentioned it in our class in grade ten. Gosh I wished I wouldn't have waited all this time to finally watch it, although maybe it's a good thing cause I would have probably been a little bit more traumatized at 14... This movie is exceptional!!! Makes u think, makes you frustrated, makes you wanna scream and even makes you cry! Edward Norton is just phenomenal playing the role of a freak skin head and even more so playing this skin head who finally realizes how stupid he was and tries to protect his younger brother. Edward Furlong also does an amazing job!!! This film is moving in so many ways...I can't even describe how real and heartfelt it felt. I definitely think Edward Norton should have won the Oscar for his performance, cause he was absolutely terrific! I can't get why they didn't gave it to him... This movie will surely stay on my mind for a while now... just thinking that some place in the world things like that still happen...it crushes my heart. This is a wonderful movie that every single person should see at least once in his life... Watch American History X, it totally worth it!


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 November 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

American History X See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$156,076, 1 November 1998

Gross USA:

$6,719,864

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$23,875,127
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (workprint)

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital | DTS

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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