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Making the Grade

34 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Higher education flies right off the comedy curve in this hilarious fun-fest loaded with "real out-loud laughs" (Los Angeles Times)! Judd Nelson (The Breakfast Club, St. Elmo's Fire) is "well cast and likeable" (Los Angeles Times) in this "splendidly played" (Variety) film that scores top marks for reading, rioting and rock 'n' roll! Palmer Woodrow III (Dana Olsen) has everything money can buy except a high school diploma. And when his parents threaten to cut him off unless he graduates, Palmer decides he'd rather party in Parisand hire young hustler Eddie Keaton (Nelson) to attend a prestigious prep school in his place! Short on cash and long on debt, Eddie is glad to do it, if just to get away from his bookie, the dangerous Diceman (Andrew Dice Clay). Disguised as the perfect preppy, Eddie easily fools the faculty, charms the coedsand rocks the campus! But when the Diceman tracks him down, streetwise Eddie must keep his cover tostay in school or go back to the 'hood for good!


Special Features

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Product Details

  • Actors: Judd Nelson, Jonna Lee, Gordon Jump, Walter Olkewicz, Ronald Lacey
  • Directors: Dorian Walker
  • Writers: Gene Quintano, Charles Gale
  • Producers: Gene Quintano, Menahem Golan, Yoram Globus
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: October 2, 2001
  • Run Time: 105 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005N89P
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #59,628 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Making the Grade" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Christoph B. Gondek on August 24, 2001
Format: DVD
I know what you're thinking. "Judd Nelson in a 80's teen movie. Pass" Such is your misfortune, because Making the Grade is a cut above most 80's teen movies, mainly because of an great supporting cast, led by screenwriter Dana Olsen in one of the great characters from 80's teen flicks, preppy slob Palmer Woodrow III. The plot is fairly simple. Palmer has to graduate from prep school, so, like all rich kids, he hires an impostor from the streets (Judd Nelson) to impersonate him at his new prep school, while he spends some quality slacking time. Unfortunately, he has picked a guy with a questionable pass, which will return to haunt them all. The two leads aren't very interesting and the fish out of water plot is hardly new, but once you get past that, you will be laughing at everyone else in the movie. Just remember Palmer's creed, "I'm rich, I don't have to be nice," and all will be well.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mr Doug Gordon on March 11, 2002
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I was surprised to see this movie available on DVD. It was a long time since I had seen this movie, and viewing it again brought back some great memories from the '80s. Judd Nelson plays a street kid that switches places with a rich guy, and goes to Prep School for him. Lots of Preppies, and laughs are what this movie is all about! This classic was a Golan & Globus Production, which also gave us movies like "Breakin'", and "Invasion USA" If you like '80s teem comedies, this one is a "must have" for your collection.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By John Santiago on August 31, 2001
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
"'ha-ha-haa, ha-ha-haa, ha-ha-ha-ha-haa-haaaa' a manly laugh, for manly men such as we" These, and other infamous quotes will undoubtedly go down in history as misunderstood genius. Or, maybe, they will just go down in history. Regardless, Making the Grade chronicles the mishaps of that zany group, Palmer, Eddie, and the charasmatic Dice, as they trapse throughout Hoover prep in search of Love, money, and those last 11 minutes on the hour. In addition, the sound track by Shandi brings such incredible emotional swells that one can only be reduced to tears. Even if you aren't a fan of 80s B movie genre, you find a loveable cast carving out shards of humanity in a humanistic drama wrought by cunning deception and vengeful greed. A great movie depicting a classic era. Its also a great educational film. Quotes like "remember, its almost NEVER the letter E" got me through a prestigious medical school. Give this one time, its an acquired taste, like Brie. You will love it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By nina on December 28, 2003
Format: DVD
Okay, I know this movie is twenty years old. I know in the 80's it was ignored. I know it's not the best film but I enjoyed it.I also know I should be glad it's even available on DVD in the first place but the DVD was pathetic. I am surprised they offered the trailer but no special features whatsoever? Even films from the 50's and 60's that are on DVD have commentary. I wanted to see old interviews and updates about the stars, especially Jonna Lee who I haven't heard of since the 80's. I used to love Judd Nelson and first saw this film when I was barely four. The DVD should have offered commentary from Judd Nelson ( it's not like he has anything better to do these days ) or at least Andrew Dice Clay. Something! I am sick of studios shoving out DVDs that cost fourteen dollars and sticking you with an unclear muffled trailer, no commentary, no special features...nothing! Judd Nelson made his film debut in this movie and he did a damn good job. Now why couldn't the DVD live up to that?
The four stars are for the film. I give one star for the DVD version.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By ! MR. KNOW IT ALL ;-b VINE VOICE on July 14, 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I had not seen this comedy for at least 20 years, before watching this last night. I was surprised how many little moments I remembered, but did not realize they were from this movie! The film starts out a little cheesy,but does pick up once the premise has been set up. The movie feature Andrew "Dice" Clay in a small,but important role. Dice pulls off a couple of funny impressions of Travola and Pacino and plays his "Dice Man" to the hilt. I like the movie because it has not been over played and it does have it's moments. The cast is good, there is a little twist on the same old story and you gotta love that generic 80's music! The DVD transfer looks good.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 13, 2002
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is a funny screwball prep-school comedy; most plot devices are pretty standard but it is amusing nonetheless. Of course it is one of Judd Nelson's first movies, and although there are no surprise endings here, it is a fun way to spend a couple of hours. Andrew Dice Clay shows up for a while, harkening back to an era when his film presence wasn't poison (pre MTv ban). Overall an enjoyable movie.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Barry on January 8, 2013
Format: DVD
When we first got a VCR in the mid 80s or so, I distinctly remember that 'Making The Grade' was among some of the first movies we ever rented for this newfangled invention. A momentous occasion firmly etched into my memory. So, the movie has that built in nostalgia going for it. However, having just seen the movie for the first time in 2 decades or more, I was happy to discover that it is more than just pure nostalgia (although it is that), but a thoroughly enjoyable, charming comedy.

Palmer Woodrow (Dana Olsen) is a rich, spoiled, privileged young man. He would much rather lay about and party than anything else. But when his father orders him to attend Hoover Academy, Palmer has other ideas. He hires street kid Eddie Keaton (Judd Nelson) to take his place at the academy, while he goes to Europe. Eddie gets $10,000 dollars to make sure that Palmer graduates. This is a perfect situation for Eddie. He gets money and a hiding place from the Dice Man (Andrew "Dice" Clay), who's looking to collect. In the process, Eddie falls in love and rocks the campus.

The 80s comedy youth movie was powerful in the 80s. Not to mention a lot of fun. The decade was full of them. "Making The Grade" may not re-invent the wheel or have some different, fresh approach to the 80s youth/school comedies, but it is a delightful and insanely watchable movie. A nice addition to the genre. Coming just before his big breakthrough hits in "The Breakfast Club" and "St. Elmo's Fire", Judd Nelson is very charming and appealing and you can easily see his star power in the making. His entrance to the academy is cool and memorable. Other familiar faces in the movie include Gordon Jump ("WKRP In Cincinnati") and Dan Schneider ("Head Of The Class" and "Better Off Dead").
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