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Killing Mr Griffin (1997)

Scott Bairstow , Amy Jo Johnson , Jack Bender  |  PG-13 |  DVD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Scott Bairstow, Amy Jo Johnson, Mario Lopez, Chris Young, Michelle Williams
  • Directors: Jack Bender
  • Writers: Kathleen Rowell, Lois Duncan, Michael Angeli
  • Producers: Chris Young, Bonnie Raskin, Suzy Beugen, Thomas L. Wilhite
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, Black & White
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Live / Artisan
  • DVD Release Date: August 19, 2003
  • Run Time: 89 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00009YXGP
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #122,792 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Killing Mr Griffin" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

From the author of I Know What You Did Last Summer comes this edge-of-your-seat thriller, reminiscent of Teaching Mrs. Tingle. A group of high school students (Amy Jo Johnson, "Felicity"; Scott Baristow, The Postman; Mario Lopez, Colors) hatch a plot to kidnap an overly strict teacher, Mr. Griffin (Jay Thomas, Mr. Holland's Opus), wanting to teach him a lesson in humiliation. But the lesson goes too far. Mr. Griffin isn't cooperating. They leave him tied up in the woods only to return and find him dead. Who killed Mr. Griffin? What started out as a prank has turned into murder. A cover-up begins as the plot twists. How can they find out who really killed Mr. Griffin?

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Good! June 19, 2000
Finally! A Lois Duncan movie that actually is LIKE the book.
For most people that have seen the movie and read the book probably think I'm crazy. I've heard many times that the movie is NOTHING like the book.
NOT so!
Even Lois Duncan liked it herself and was proud to have her name on it.
The movie follows a silent, shy girl named Susan that is far from popular. She daydreams about David, a popular boy in what I call the "in-crowd". Things start heating up when Mr. Griffin, a tough, no-nonsense teacher, brings the in-crowd to their knees. Play time and slacking is over when you hit his classroom.
Of course, the in-crowd doesn't like it and the leader, Mark, convinces the others in the group (ala followers) to play a...vengeful prank on Griffin: kidnap him and make him crawl like he does to his students. But they need a decoy: Susan, who is one of Griffin's better students. Susan, dazzled by the attention of the in-crowd and David, falls into their whims and agrees to help with the prank. But things suddenly go wrong. Yep, of all things Griffin ends up dead by accident--or is it? Now the rest of the movie the group tries to cover up the crime. But, of course, their plans go wrong.
The movie, I believe, captured the essense of Lois Duncan's original novel. It has some differences (major to minor), but the point of Duncan's book is there. Unlike like other movies based on Lois Duncan's novels, (I Know What You Did Last Summer and I've Been Waiting For You for example) Lois Duncan's point of writing the original novel is not thrown away to make a cheap teen slasher flick. And that alone gets kudos in my book.
Rent it and see.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great page-to-screen adaptation January 26, 2004
Lois Duncan's Killing Mr. Griffin was an interesting novel in its own right, but this made for television movie manages to improve on the original. Amy Jo Johnson, the pretty young actress many may recognize as the former Pink Power Ranger, stars as Susan McConnell. Susan is a good student, yet she is shy and awkward around the popular crowd. She is especially shy around Dave (former "Saved by the Bell" player Mario Lopez), the handsome jock she has a crush on. Mark, the leader of the group Dave hangs with, is bent on becoming student body president and the most popular guy in high school. After being humiliated by Mr. Griffin, the notoriously strict English teacher, Mark develops a plan to get revenge. They will kidnap Mr. Griffin as a prank to humiliate him as he has humiliated students. Susan is unwittingly sucked into the plan by her feelings for Dave and her desire to become popular. Dave is pressured into using Susan's obvious feelings for him to a nasty advantage. The plan to kidnap Griffin goes almost as planned...but then he dies unexpectedly, and things spin out of control. The climax of the film is better than that in the novel, with just enough suspense to keep viewers hooked. Overall, this movie was excellent, and serves as a grim reminder of what peer pressure is capable of. The only qualm I had was that it was not a theatrical release. Highly recommended.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
I had to remind myself that I checked out "Killing Mr. Griffin" because Michelle Williams was in it and I had thrown all of her movies that I had not seen into my queue because she has done some fairly interesting Independent films since "Dawons's Creek." However, this made for television movie predates those dates. It was not really at the top of the queue, but I have a lot of movies on short, long and very long wait ahead of it and was looking for a horror film for Saturday night and this is what arrived.

The heroine of the film turns out to be Susan McConnell (Amy Jo Johnson, from "Felicity"), who used to be the favorite student of Mr. John Griffin (Jay Thomas), her English teacher. But her approaching senior year, boys, or other indeterminate issues related to teenage angst have set her back. The class is discussing and reading aloud Shakespeare's "Tragedy of Julius Caesar" and Amy's reading of the title role at the start of the assassination scene lacks the arrogance that Mr. Griffin demands. A few harsh words from the teacher send Amy back to her seat in tears. It is after this point that we learn that Amy is one of his better students. This is a surprise because the way he treats her is indistinguishable from the way he treats Mark Kinney (Scott Bairstow), a student with arrogance oozing from every pore who does not like being forced to apologize to his teacher before the class.

Mark exercises the divine right of the Big Man on Campus to take down the teacher who pointedly asks him, "Has anybody ever told you 'no' and really meant it?" So he gathers his small group of fans and gets them to go along with what he describes as a prank: they will kidnap Mr. Griffin, humiliate him the way he has humiliated them, get him to beg and videotape it.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Would you go as far as murder for payback? January 25, 2004
By Everett
Killing Mr. Griffin could as well be true. A lot of people would go through anything just to fit in. But could you lose everything you know and understand in the process? An understandable movie about Responsibility, and Mistrust in the way of fitting in.
Mr. Griffin is a strict teacher. Maybe too strict. Five seniors at the school Mr. Griffin teaches at think so. When revenge is the first thought that comes to mind, Mark, David, Jeff, Bree, and Tori set out to find a way to get back at Mr. Griffin for what he's done, but no one is volunteering for bait. When Susan McConnell is put under the spotlight for what seems a harmless prank, she decides to go for it. Besides she gets a couple of satisfactions to go with it. One, she gets to fit in. Two, she can get Mr. Griffin back at embarrasing her in class, and Three, she can hang out with David, the guy she has a crush on. When Susan sees what doesn't seem like an inoccent prank, she goes to where they have left poor Mr. Griffin tied up, and hostage. But Mr. Griffin isn't moving. He isn't even breathing. He's dead. After trying to figure out what happened to Mr. Griffin, the six are faced up against the biggest decision of their lives. Tell what happened, or keep it a secret.
An amazing story. The characters may have been mixed up a little bit, but it still made a great story. Lois Duncan did well with the book, but I think the movie was better. In the book you weren't as sorry for Mr. Griffin as you were watching the movie. Jay Thomas gave an awesome portrayal of the overlystrict Mr. Griffin. I think they kind of mixed Susan and her friend Maya up on accident. Susan was supposed to be the loner with glasses, and not exactly attractive. But Susan was very attractive in this movie. It was kind of hard to believe she couldn't get a boyfriend.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Teachers Beware!
I don't quite understand why they made the changes they did to this film (i.e. Mr. Griffin's first name. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Philip Scholz
5.0 out of 5 stars Video
The video was new and came very fast. It did not follow the book at all, but that was a director's choice.
Published 18 months ago by babsmuri
1.0 out of 5 stars Poor quality
I was disappointed in this movie as it was a copy and not an original DVD. I can only play it on certain machines as my laptop can't read it. For $30. Read more
Published on March 25, 2012 by Hsepia
5.0 out of 5 stars Good For a Little Character Development
I have used this video after reading the book in my Literature class. The many decisions made by all the people in the book, make for a lively discussion. Read more
Published on July 1, 2011 by Katherine Latasa
4.0 out of 5 stars Not the book
Movie was okay but we bought it to go along with the book and there are hardly any similarities. Good movie to use to talk to teens about peer pressure.
Published on May 25, 2011 by KLR, WY
5.0 out of 5 stars As good as the book itself.
Killing Mr. Griffin is an amazing movie that keeps you wondering up until the very end. The movie is as good as the book itself!!
Published on July 13, 2007 by C. Gentile
5.0 out of 5 stars Amy Jo
The movie is awesome as far as tv movies go. Amy Jo was amazing, definitely proved how talented she is...a definite plus for amy jo fans! Read more
Published on July 25, 2006 by Malachiyah Epperson- Adams
1.0 out of 5 stars No closed caption or english subtiles.
I am not happy with that dvd cause it says has closed caption and english subtiles on dvd but i put that dvd in player and it has no closed caption or english subtiles, It is not... Read more
Published on November 29, 2004 by Bradley Campbell
5.0 out of 5 stars UNEXPECTED SURPRISE
This NBC-TV movie surprised me. Writers Kathleen Rowell and Michael Angeli are very adept in creating both scenes and dialogue that seems realistic: the mousy girl who wants to... Read more
Published on January 24, 2004 by Michael Butts
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Film For Mario Lopez Fans.
This teacher (played by Jay Thomas) at first seems to be a teacher that deserves respect, however as the movie progresses we can see that just teaching students not to be tardy six... Read more
Published on July 14, 2003 by James McDonald
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