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School Daze

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Movie Info & Cast


A not so popular young man wants to pledge to a popular fraternity at his historically black college.


  • Larry Fishburne
  • Giancarlo Esposito
  • Tisha Campbell
  • Joe Seneca
  • Art Evans
  • Ellen Holly
  • Kyme
  • Ossie Davis
  • Spike Lee
  • Branford Marsalis

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Although the film has big structural problems and leaves a lot of loose ends, there was never a moment when it didn’t absorb me, because I felt as if I was watching the characters talk to one another, instead of to me.

Metacritic review by Roger Ebert
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

School Daze is, if nothing else, a compelling time capsule of racial politics in the late ‘80s, ethnographically sealed-off in a hothouse micro-environment (an all-black college campus) that’s as constrictive as Lee’s varying plot threads and stylistic whims are profuse.

Metacritic review by Eric Henderson
Eric Henderson
Slant Magazine

Neither this anger nor Mr. Lee's daring is ever given free rein. Instead of a sharp satire or even an Animal House variation (since fraternity life is central to its story), School Daze is a collection of musical numbers, dramatic episodes, attempts at parody and cinematic wild cards, bound together only loosely by Mr. Lee's prevailing sense of outrage.

Metacritic review by Janet Maslin
Janet Maslin
The New York Times