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71 of 84 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A pleasure on so many levels
"Fast Times at Ridgemont High" Is a strong contender for the best teen movie from the eighties.
The case for the movie is easy to make: It is written by Cameron Crowe, who wrote Jerry Maguire, Say Anything, and Almost Famous. It is beautifully filmed and directed. (Director is Amy Heckerling, who apart from being awefully cute has made such wonderful movies...
Published on April 10, 2004 by Eolake

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81 of 97 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Another FT ripoff - still no no missing scenes restored!
I can't believe the director of this movie keeps standing for the out and out censorship of this! It's (at least) the third release of it on DVD, and this latest (Nov. 2004) try is still a dud. The big problem remains the scenes which they only include in the cable TV versions of this, but keep cutting from the DVD. Why the heck do they?

One of the missing...
Published on February 2, 2005 by Edmond Gauthier


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71 of 84 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A pleasure on so many levels, April 10, 2004
By 
Eolake "eolake (.com)" (Lancashire, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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"Fast Times at Ridgemont High" Is a strong contender for the best teen movie from the eighties.
The case for the movie is easy to make: It is written by Cameron Crowe, who wrote Jerry Maguire, Say Anything, and Almost Famous. It is beautifully filmed and directed. (Director is Amy Heckerling, who apart from being awefully cute has made such wonderful movies as Clueless.) It is funny and real. And it has a magnificent cast of young actors who where unknowns then.
The surfer/stoner is famously played by Sean Penn in one of his first roles, and he is awesome. Jennifer Jason Leigh is perfect as the young innocent fifteen-year-old. (Amazingly she was about 20 when she played it, but you'd never know it.)
And Phoebe Cates... As Amy Heckerling says in a featurette: The boys just loves Phoebe... the rental cassettes always track a lot around the place where she takes off her top, they've been freeze-framed so much..." Which is as good a reason as any to get the DVD version, they slow-mo and freeze-frame a lot better... But seriously, Phoebe is a wonderful actress who has been woefully underused by Hollywood. And she is also just stunningly cute to boot. Even if this film had nothing else going for it, get it for her. (She is also excellent in the later film Princess Caraboo, and she is buck nude in the light "Paradise", which I hope they will put on DVD soon.)
Eolake
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81 of 97 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Another FT ripoff - still no no missing scenes restored!, February 2, 2005
I can't believe the director of this movie keeps standing for the out and out censorship of this! It's (at least) the third release of it on DVD, and this latest (Nov. 2004) try is still a dud. The big problem remains the scenes which they only include in the cable TV versions of this, but keep cutting from the DVD. Why the heck do they?

One of the missing scenes is a very cool safe sex/birth control scene in the mall, for instance. Fast Times sticks out as one of the very rare films that this odd censorship has been performed on. In fact, out of thousands of releases since DVDs started in 1995, this is almost the only one this has ever happened to!

So again we can only ask why? WHY?
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great movie, but not the DVD it should be, August 4, 2000
By 
While the film itself is a bona fide classic, and the transfer is crisp and clear, this DVD production is sorely lacking. The extras are slim, and the bonus soundtrack featuring commentary from directory Amy Heckerling and writer Cameron Crowe is unenlightening. The original trailer (showing how the studio sold the film to audiences), and the documentary (including contemporary interviews with several of the players) are nice bonuses.

Like other seminal teen films (e.g., American Grafitti), so many imitations sprouted in their wake, it's hard to remember the ground that was broken with the original releases. But this was a truly groundbreaking film in its attitude and perspective on high school life. Crowe's undercover study yielded a dead-on portrait, and Heckerling's direction makes the most of it.

As a DVD production, though, the enhancements are disappointing. The additional soundtrack, featuring the director and writer in conversation is incredibly insipid, repetitive and sycophantic. 90% of it is taken up with Heckerling complimenting Crowe, Crowe complimenting Heckerling, and Heckerling and Crowe drooling over Sean Pean. Very little of it concerns the actual filmmaking, and, surprisingly, given the lucidity with which Heckerling and Crowe are able to commit their thoughts to film, they shed very little light on the film itself.

Even more maddening is that Heckerling and Crowe often speak of alternate takes and extra footage included in the TV version of the film, yet none of it is included on the DVD.

Move: 5 stars. DVD production: 2 stars.
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24 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fast Times indeed!, July 10, 2006
By 
James Ferguson (Vilnius, Lithuania) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
One of the classic high school movies, Fast Times spawned a slew of teenage talent on the big screen, but no one was more memorable in this movie than Sean Penn as Spicoli. Amy Heckerling cuts out a slice of Southern Californian life from a San Bernardino high school that shows both honor students and misfits alike. While the signature moments belonged to Spicoli, there were many other great scenes such as the ongoing burger war in which Judge Reinhold finds himself on the short end of the spatula. Meanwhile his little sis, a seemingly innocent Jennifer Jason Leigh, experiments with dating and sex with an amusing pair of misfits, Brian Backer and Robert Romanus. Phoebe Cates tries to set her young prodigy straight but to no avail. Forest Whitaker even has a significant moment in this movie as the bruising defensive lineman who takes out the destruction of his prized car on the opposing team. Little did he know that Spicoli had a hand in it. But, it is the hilarious relationship between Spicoli and Mr. Hand (Ray Walston) that steals the show. Fast Times may appear a bit dated, but it hasn't lost any of its humor.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Where are the deleted scenes?, November 17, 2004
I first saw this movie when I was in 9th grade. I loved it. Over the past 21 years I have watched it many times. I practically have it memorized. It is a true classic. When they released this version I thought for sure they would have the deleted scenes that were only shown on the cable tv version. I was very upset. I have only seen the deleted scenes one time. I wanted to see them again. Why even release this movie again without the deleted scenes? I don't understand. Sure there is some different commentary. But, the movie is the exact same as before. Releasing it again the way they did this time is just a waste of time.

Chad Smalley
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AWESOME.....TOTALLY AWESOME!!, October 31, 1999
By 
Arthur Carter (Phoenix, AZ USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
If there is a must see movie about high school life in the 80's....this is it. Southern California high school life at it's finest, with the help of a lot of stars-Sean Penn, Eric Stoltz, Jennifer Jason-Leigh, Judge Reinhold, and who could forget Ray Walston as "Mr. Hand". You WILL enjoy this movie! This is a "KEEPER".
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome... Totally Awesome... Alright Hamilton!!!, September 16, 1999
By A Customer
And that's the way it was.... An incisive look at high school life in the early 80's, right down to the Pat Benatar look-alikes. For the now 30-somethings of that era characters like Mike Damone, Jefferson, & Brad Hamilton are legendary. But the one who steals the show is Jeff Spicoli. It is nearly impossible to believe that is actually Sean Penn behind that mop of blond hair & stoned smile. This was the first of many great Penn performances where he literally pours himself into the role and becomes the character. Watch for unexpected cameos from Nicholas Cage, Eric Stoltz, & Anthony Edwards among others.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Times, January 30, 2001
Fast Times At Ridgemont High is Cameron Crowe's first foray into the movie industry. He started out (as chronicled in Almost Famous) as a teenage reporter for Rolling Stone. After he left the magazine, he posed as a high schooler in a Southern California high school. The result was a book that was turned into this movie. Mr. Crowe wrote the screenplay and Amy Heckerling directed. The movie follows several different students and is one of the funniest movies ever made. Sean Penn stars as the stoner surfer Jeff Spicoli who only goal in life is to find some tasty waves and keep a cool buzz. His history professor, Mr. Hand (played with menacing glee by the late Ray Walston), provides an adversary for Spicoli to go up against. Judge Reinhold & Jennifer Jason-Leigh play brother & sister, Brad & Stacy. Brad is a senior who seems to have it all, cool car, good job at a burger joint and a perfect girlfriend. All of this collapses on him as his girlfriend breaks up with him, he's fired from his job and is forced to work a couple of embarrassing jobs. Stacy is a freshman and works at a pizza place in the mall (which is the center of alot of activity in the film) with the world wise Linda (played by Phoebe Cates). Linda is constantly giving advice to the naive Stacy. She meets an older guy and in one of the more poignant moments in the film, loses her virginity to him in a baseball dugout. Mark Ratner works at the movie theater in the mall and has a crush on Stacy. His friend, Mike Damone (played by Robert Romanus) is a hustler who scalps tickets to concerts and he, like Linda to Stacy, gives advice to "Rat". Stacy and Rat eventual go out, but Damone ends up sleeping with Stacy. A whole mess ensues, but in the end, every one makes up. The movie was a springboard to the careers of Mr. Penn, Ms. Cates, Ms. Leigh and Mr. Reinhold and is riff with future stars in small roles including Nicholas Cage, Anthony Edwards, Eric Stoltz & Forrest Whitaker. The movie has a great soundtrack and is a perfect snapshot of the fashions, trends and lives of teenagers in the early 80's. But throw away the different hairstyles, clothes, slang and music, the situations that the kids get into are the same for any generation and we can all relate.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate High School Classic, September 16, 2001
Fast Times At Ridgemont High is a monumental film for a lot of people. I was 3 or 4 when it came out, but this film would still work and ring true to people my age in this modern day and time. That's why this film is completely timeless. The premise is pretty simple. It's about a bunch of high school kids in the early 80's dealing with everyday life, which includes girls, boys, sex, drugs, sex, and, oh, did I mention sex?. After watching this hilarious and downright touching film, you wonder why Phoebe Cates isn't a bigger star. Her famous scene(not for children)is classic and the fantasy of every red blooded American male in the country. Sean Penn gives one of comedy's most memorable characters as stoner Jeff Spicolli. He is brilliant in this film. There has not been another teen/school movie like this that is as special or classic. There have been a few that came close. The rest of the cast is great: Judge Reinhold, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Forrest Whitaker, Ray Walston. This is a great film. A true comedy classic!.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What are you people - on dope?, February 1, 2001
By 
Matthew Thomas (East Malvern, Victoria, Australia) - See all my reviews
"Fast Times At Ridgemont High" is essential viewing for anyone that thought "American Pie" was funny. An excellent cast included the late Ray Walston as the concerned American History teacher Mr. Hand. His famous line "What are you people - on dope?" later was used in the 1991 dance song "Total Confusion" by A Homeboy, A Hippi, & A Funki Dred. Sean Penn is hilarious whenever on screen, either via facial expressions or quotes. Phoebe Cates gorgeous as the supposed sexually experienced Linda Barrett ("if I didn't have a fiance in Chicago I'd go for it") although Jennifer Jason Leigh as her naive friend was the one who actually had the sex. Being 32, I really like some 80's movies even today, and can watch "Risky Business", "Revenge Of The Nerds" and "Fast Times..." over and over again. This movie is funny one moment and depressing the next. (Who hasn't winced when Mark Ratner, initally, blows it with Stacey Hamilton?) A movie that deserves all plaudits - gets better with repeated viewings. Initially, I'd reviewed the VHS version - the DVD version finally was released in Australia this week (June 20th, 2002)- and it's worth buying. You get the film, the film again in it's entirety with Amy Heckerling and Cameron Crowe talking - anyone seriously into the film will love this - they discuss add-libbed dialogue, song choices, locations, etc. A documentary "Reliving Our Fast Times..." which is great, interviews with several cast members including the late Ray Walston. Also includes trailer, cast bios, etc.
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Fast Times at Ridgemont High (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy)
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