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Plot, Details & Awards

The Principal

In Theaters 09/18/1987 , 105min.
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Plot & Details

An impulsive but determined white principal brings order and respect to a predominantly African-American and Latino high school in this comedy-drama from the director of Young Guns and That Was Then, This Is Now. Rick Latimer (James Belushi), a high-school teacher, is in the process of a divorce when he sees his estranged wife at a bar having drinks with her attorney. Drunk and enraged, he smashes the guy's car up and receives a reprimand from the school board -- a new job as principal at rough-and-tumble Brandel High. Security guard Jake Phillips (Louis Gossett Jr.) is soon teaching his new boss the ropes, but Rick isn't willing to accept the violent and drug-ridden status quo. With a two-word motto -- "No More!" -- he sets about cleaning out the riff-raff, also taking time out to tutor students and get to know Jake. But when chief thug Victor (Michael Wright) refuses to back down, the violence escalates. Eventually, Victor's vengeance threatens the lives of steely history teacher Hilary Orozco (Rae Dawn Chong) -- and Rick himself. Kelly Minter, who plays one of Brandel High's troubled students, portrayed a dyslexic in the similarly themed Summer School the same year The Principal was released. Screenwriter Frank Deese would go on to write the Corey Haim/Corey Feldman vehicle License to Drive.

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