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Rushmore (1998)

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The extracurricular king of Rushmore Preparatory School is put on academic probation.

Director:

Wes Anderson
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Popularity
2,953 ( 271)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 16 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jason Schwartzman ... Max Fischer
Bill Murray ... Herman Blume
Olivia Williams ... Rosemary Cross
Seymour Cassel ... Bert Fischer
Brian Cox ... Dr. Nelson Guggenheim
Mason Gamble ... Dirk Calloway
Sara Tanaka Sara Tanaka ... Margaret Yang
Stephen McCole ... Magnus Buchan
Connie Nielsen ... Mrs. Calloway
Luke Wilson ... Dr. Peter Flynn
Dipak Pallana Dipak Pallana ... Mr. Adams (as Deepak Pallana)
Andrew Wilson ... Coach Beck
Marietta Marich Marietta Marich ... Mrs. Guggenheim
Ronnie McCawley Ronnie McCawley ... Ronny Blume
Keith McCawley Keith McCawley ... Donny Blume
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Storyline

Max Fischer is a precocious 15-year-old whose reason for living is his attendance at Rushmore, a private school where he's not doing well in any of his classes, but where he's the king of extracurricular activities - from being in the beekeeping society to writing and producing plays, there's very little after school he doesn't do. His life begins to change, however, when he finds out he's on academic probation, and when he stumbles into love with Miss Cross, a pretty teacher of the elementary school at Rushmore. Added to the mix is his friendship with Herman Blume, wealthy industrialist and father to boys who attend the school, and who also finds himself attracted to Miss Cross. Max's fate becomes inextricably tied to this odd love triangle, and how he sets about resolving it is the story in the film. Written by Gary Dickerson <slug@mail. utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

"She was my Rushmore" See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish | Latin | French

Release Date:

19 February 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Rushmore See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$9,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$43,666, 13 December 1998

Gross USA:

$17,105,219

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$17,195,500
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Max (Jason Schwartzman) asks Margaret Yang (Sara Tanaka) to remove her glasses, and tells her she looks better without them. While this is a staple of many romantic comedies, it was also used in Rocky (1976), and the girl in glasses was played by Jason Schwartzman's mother, Talia Shire. Max's conversation with the Headmaster (Brian Cox), asking to let him stay at Rushmore "for old times' sake", mirrors a similar scene in The Godfather (1972), between Sal Tessio (Abe Vigoda) and Tom Hagen (Robert Duvall). Shire also appeared in that film. Max's play features many similarities to Apocalypse Now (1979) which, like The Godfather (1972), was directed by Shire's brother, and Jason's uncle, Francis Ford Coppola. See more »

Goofs

When Dirk confronts Herman by standing in front of his car, Herman's son is in the front seat with his head in his hand, gesturing impatiently. Then he is suddenly sitting upright with his hand on the side visor. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Student: If, and only if, both sides of the numerator is divisible by the inverse of he square root of the two unassigned variable.
School Professor: Good. Except when the value of the "X" coordinate is equal to or less than the value of one. Yes Isaac?
Student: What about *that* problem?
School Professor: Oh, that? Don't worry about that.
Student: Wait. Why?
School Professor: I just put that up as a joke. That's probably the hardest geometry equation in the world.
Student: Well, how much extra credit is it worth?
School Professor: Well, considering I've never seen anyone get it right, ...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Flat Earth & Other Hot Potatoes: Episode #1.22 (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

A Quick One While He's Away
Words and Music by Pete Townshend
Published by TRO-Essex Music, Inc. (ASCAP)
Performed by The Who
By Arrangement with ABKCO Records
See more »

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User Reviews

Succeeds because there is as much dark emotion as there is dark comedy
27 March 2005 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

Max Fischer has a scholarship to exclusive prep school Rushmore, despite the fact that he really isn't as smart as his demeanour would suggest. He relentlessly talks himself up, forms and joins clubs and seems to impress as many people as he annoys – all with a very thin veil of lies to support it. When he falls in love with a teacher (Rosemary Cross) things appear wonderful but it is not long before he has messed it up. His frustrated friend (Herman Blume) tries to help but only succeeds in making things much, much worse and Max risks losing everything that is important to him.

Having recently see The Life Aquatic etc I decided to step back to a film that I feel did Wes Anderson's humour and talent much more of a service and one in which he got the mix just right. To me Rushmore is that film, although this is not to imply that it will appeal to those that just don't like any of his films. The plot is the usual mix of offbeat characters, strange events and deep seated emotions (and usually not happy ones either), it is quirky and humorous but it still works because, unlike Life Aquatic, it has enough heart and plot to balance out the dark quirky humour. To me the story is still a bit strange and difficult to get into but it does the hard work for you and even when I was still getting into it I was interested if not totally involved. The heart of the story is not one I could relate to, but I was able to feel for the characters and got into it quickly as a result – none of them are instantly likable characters or simple ones but they are still well written and delivered. The humour is never really consistently hilarious but to complain about a lack of belly laughs is to miss the point; for me the dark humour was well done and I found the film funny even when it didn't draw laughs from me.

The cast are impressive and work well with the material they are given. Murray has much more meat in this supporting role than he did with Zissou and he does very good work with it throughout while also managing to carry off his deadpan delivery as well as usual. Schwartzman is spot on with a character that we are never able to truly like but have to get behind at the same time – he pitches it just right and shows a great understanding of his character. Williams is beautiful and vulnerable and works well in her role while support is good from Cox and Cassel as well as several others in support roles and cameos. Special mention to Tanaka for being the sweetest redemption I've seen in many a film and pulls off the geeky but wonderful girl of many of our dreams.

Overall this is a good film but not one that will appeal to the majority of viewers or be the one to win over those that just don't like Wes Anderson's films. The plot and characters are interesting throughout and the film succeeds because it manages to mix emotional content with darkly quirky humour rather than doing one at the expense of the other. An enjoyable film and probably my favourite from Anderson thus far.


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