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The 100




How I Got Into College
(1989)
Reviewed by Tom Panarese
Rating: 9 Beans

avage Steve Holland is a god.

I mean, I think that was pretty well-established when he released "Better Off Dead" back in 1985 and "One Crazy Summer" in 1987, but if you needed any further proof, watch "How I Got Into College."

Now, I don't want you to get the impression that I think this is a good movie, because it's not. It's pretty bad. But the parts that are good ... well, they shine. They shine so well, in fact, that I seriously recommend every high school senior in America watch this movie.

Okay, with that out of the way, "How I Got Into College" stars Corey Parker as Marlon Browne, a scrawny dork whose entire life revolves around his crush on Jessica Keilo (Lara Flynn Boyle). They're both high school seniors applying to college, and when she decides she wants nothing more to attend Ramsey College he follows her.

And in true bad 1980s comedy fashion, hijinks ensue.

Okay, it's not that simple, because Anthony Edwards plays Kip Hammet, one of Ramsey's admissions officers who is usure of his station in life or his faith in his job, as it seems that the college's admissions department is going to be run by the smarmy numbers-obsessed Leo Whitman (Charles Rocket). Kip believes in the quality of the individual over his numbers and this ultimately leads him to champion both Marlon and Jessica.

The plot and its outcome are very obvious. For instance, Jessica tells the story about "the girl who cracked," and of course ends up becoming that girl during her admissions interview. However, the movie is full of hilarious moments that make it very worth watching. First, there are Bruce Wagner and Tom Kenney as "A" and "B," a personification of the famous "Two men, A and B" from SAT questions, who have to endure Marlon's test taking ineptitude, even though he is taken the Benedict-Brauer college prep course, taught by instructors Phil Hartman and Nora Dunn.

Savage Steve Holland film vet Curtis Armstrong ("Booger" from Revenge of the Nerds) shows up as the recruiter from Arcadia Bible Academy ("Jesus loves you!" "He wouldn't if he saw my SAT scores."), and Taylor Negron (trust me, you'd know this guy if you saw him ... he's in EVERYTHING) plays the mailman who delivers news that no, Marlon hasn't gotten into Ramsey, but he may have already won 10,000,000 dollars.

People who haven't endured college admissions hell won't find this movie as funny as someone who has suffered through SATs twice and calls up her mother screaming "IS IT FAT OR THIN?! FAT OR THIN?!" or has that friend who's not going to college but is planning on travelling the world with renegade game show hostesses and their unclaimed prizes.

Okay, nobody's got a friend like that ... but "How I Got Into College" is in that mindless Saturday afternoon "TNT's running 'The Shawshank Redemption' again" category and makes a great ending to the Savage Steve Trilogy.






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