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The Skulls (2000)

PG-13 | | Action, Crime, Drama | 31 March 2000 (USA)
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A senior at an ivy league college, who depends on scholarships and working on the side, gets accepted into the secret society The Skulls. He hopes it betters chances at Harvard but The Skulls is not what he thought and comes at a price.

Director:

Rob Cohen

Writer:

John Pogue
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Joshua Jackson ... Luke McNamara
Paul Walker ... Caleb Mandrake
Hill Harper ... Will Beckford
Leslie Bibb ... Chloe
Christopher McDonald ... Martin Lombard
Steve Harris ... Detective Sparrow
William Petersen ... Ames Levritt
Craig T. Nelson ... Litten Mandrake
David Asman David Asman ... Jason Pitcairn
Scott Gibson ... Travis Wheeler
Nigel Bennett ... Dr. Whitney
Andrew Kraulis ... McBride
Derek Aasland Derek Aasland ... Sullivan
Jennifer Melino Jennifer Melino ... J.J.
Noah Dalton Danby ... Hugh Mauberson (as Noah Danby)
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Storyline

Luke McNamara, a college senior from a working class background joins a secret elitist college fraternity organization called "The Skulls", in hope of gaining acceptance into Harvard Law School. At first seduced by the club's trapping of power and wealth, a series of disturbing incidents, such as his best friends suicide, leads Luke to investigate the true nature of the organization and the truth behind his friends supposed suicide. He starts realizing that his future and possibly his life is in danger. Written by Kyle <Kyleshivers@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A secret society so powerful, it can give you everything you desire... at a price. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence and brief sexuality | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA | Canada

Language:

English

Release Date:

31 March 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Lobanje See more »

Filming Locations:

Belfountain, Ontario, Canada See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,034,885, 2 April 2000, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$35,007,180, 28 May 2000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When the Skulls members are heading out to the island, the castle in the background is Singer Castle on Dark Island. The island that the Skull and Bone Society owns is called Deer Island. Both islands are in the Thousand Island of the St. Lawrence River. See more »

Goofs

When Lombard and his crony chase Chloe across campus and over the football field, they run through the sprinklers. However, none of them appears wet in the next close-up. See more »

Quotes

Monk: Get up and shut up, Mandrake!
Caleb Mandrake: I'm sorry, Mr. Monk.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD version includes deleted scenes showing: Luke working as a singing flower delivery boy; a longer bar scene; after the bar scene they stop off at the news office; what happens after they fall off the roof; judge Mandrake blackmailing Luke; judge Mandrake convincing Caleb to "confess". See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Family Guy: No Chris Left Behind (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Falling
Written by Emmanuel Kiriakou
Performed by Emmanuel Kiriakou (as Eman)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
As secret as a presidential affair
31 October 2000 | by dfranzen70See all my reviews

The Skulls is a thinly veiled allusion to one of the purportedly most secret of all secret societies, Skull and Bones, the Yale group to which George Bush (the former president) belonged. You know all about those secret societies; they breed smart, rich young men who will put other smart, rich young men in power, and then those men will put other smart, rich young men in power, and so forth and yadda yadda yadda. You can find out all sorts of things about Skull and Bones online, and I suppose there's a chance some of those things are actually true. But for the purposes of this movie - and this review - suffice to say that The Skulls is a small group mostly made up of rich white kids who get paid scholarships, free cars, free women, the whole works. And what does this secret society ask for in return? Unbound loyalty, of course. Unquestioning and absolute loyalty, kind of like the Mob, really, only the Mob is more overtly criminal.

The story focuses on Luke, a townie at Yale University. Luke wants to go to law school, but the tuition's a little high. He's parentless and low on funds, so of course he's prime pickings for The Skulls. Will he join them? Darn tootin' he will, despite the protests of his best friend and this hot young blonde he likes. They try to reason with him, believing their friendship is stronger than his need to be a lawyer, but they're wrong. If they were right, we'd have no movie.

So he joins, and wouldn't you know it, all kinds of bad things happen to poor Luke. There's murder, there's corruption, and gosh and golly, our boy just doesn't know who to trust. More twists than a Poe novel; the only problem is, they're not believable twists. If you're cynical about this kind of movie (as I am), you'll laugh out loud many times, both at the acting and the dialogue. The worst offense is in the timing, quite frankly. At no point are we led to believe that this society could be a GOOD thing. We know immediately it's bad. See, I think to be truly sinister you need to wear a mask of credibility. If I already know how bad you are, I won't be as afraid of you or as startled when you actually do something despicable.

This is a real chucklefest, in the same vein as Final Destination, Urban Legends, I Know What You Did Last Summer (both movies), and even the Scream movies, which I didn't care for (but I know many of you did, so whatcha gonna do). You have an attractive cast spouting incredible lines in unbelievable situations. The old moviegoer in us wonders what Jimmy Stewart or Gregory Peck would have done in this movie when they were younger (and, in Stewart's case, alive), but that's probably a philosophical debate best left to denizens of the old critics' home. As for me, I'd say pass on The Skulls - it's as hollow as its name might imply.


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