With a 1993 release, and being a film about high-schoolers in the 70s, this film became one of the most watched films throughout my high school. It's probably also important to note that my high school earned the nickname of "The Pharmacy" due to the amount of pot dealing and smoking that took place throughout. So this is an apt movie for such a group. But I don't think we were alone, either.
If anyone remembers the 90s well, there was most definitely a 70s trend that eventually took place, mostly in the latter part of the 90s. This was largely brought on by 'That 70's Show', but I have got to throw 'Dazed and Confused' in the mix of responsibility as well. This wasn't just a film for us as teens, it was like a right of passage. If you knew this film, you were cool enough. Remember, I said high school. For some popularity was still sought after.
This particular stoner comedy revolves around the last day of school in 1976, and focuses on a variety of characters. However the film seems to have a main focus on two characters in particular. First we have Pink (Jason London), a senior who is struggling between his loyalty to his friends and his loyalty to the high school football team, and just wanting to be himself. Then we have Mitch Kramer (Wiley Wiggins), a freshman who, while trying to dodge high school initiation doesn't realize he's in for one of the best nights of his life.
In many ways this one calls back to the all-nighter classic 'American Graffiti'. It's a similar idea - a group of different characters hangs out, drives around and parties all the way until dawn. While it remains a stoner comedy, there's also a good, fair amount of drama in this, and it does a great job of looking at high school life from various angles. It illustrates perfectly well that there's just as much pressure in popularity as there is in being the new geek in town.
Added to the cast are a variety of names before they became super famous. Not the least of which, these include Ben Affleck, Mila Jovovich, Joey Lauren Adams, Rory Cochrane and Matthew McConaughey in what would probably be considered his breakout performance. You know his famous saying "alright, alright, alright"? It's from this.
This is a great movie to appreciate, even if you aren't into the weed. For my money, it's one of the best high school movies since 'The Breakfast Club' (if not the best) and it's kinda hard to think of many since that could possibly top it. We have films like 'American Pie' and 'Superbad', but high school life just wasn't captured in those comedies as well as it was here. This is an all around classic any way you slice it, and well worth the watch for anyone in any grade through high school... even if it is rated R.