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Back To School 1986

PG-13 CC

Rodney Dangerfield plays self-made millionaire Thornton Mellon, owner of a chain of tall and fat clothing stores, who, after divorcing his philandering wife, enrolls in college to keep his son from dropping out. Rodney's invasion quickly turns the campus into a non-stop party zone, and he even helps the diving team win their big meet.

Starring:
Rodney Dangerfield, Sally Kellerman
Runtime:
1 hour, 36 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Sports, Romance, Comedy
Director Alan Metter
Starring Rodney Dangerfield, Sally Kellerman
Supporting actors Burt Young, Keith Gordon, Robert Downey Jr., Paxton Whitehead, Terry Farrell, M. Emmet Walsh, Adrienne Barbeau, William Zabka, Ned Beatty, Severn Darden, Sam Kinison, Robert Picardo, Kurt Vonnegut Jr., Edie McClurg, Sarah Abrell, Dana Allison, Boris Aplon, Nora Boland
Studio MGM
MPAA rating PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Kevin Killian HALL OF FAME on October 6, 2004
Format: VHS Tape
As the word reaches us that Rodney Dangerfield has died without waking up from his coma, we take this occasion to salute him by viewing one more time his comedy classic, "BACK TO SCHOOL." Adrienne Barbeau is in it, playing a trophy wife of yesteryear, grasping and unfaithful, she's only in it for the money any more. Thornton Melon runs a men's store called, "TALL AND FAT," and I would have liked to see a whole sequel to BACK TO SCHOOL that focussed on the day to day life of running this haberdashery. Anyway he's rich enough to be able to afford to hire Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. to write a term paper for him. Sam Kinison is in the movie too as the history professor--crazy and out of this world! And Sally Kellerman is more subdued than usual playing Diane Turner, the English professor who, in a memorable scene, makes Rodney analyze the meaning of Dylan Thomas' famous poem, "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night."

Robert Downey Jr is in the movie too, he's always good for a laugh or two. And Keith Gordon plays the son, maybe his best part after the young son of Angie Dickinson in DRESSED TO KILL. But most of all the picture belongs to the one and only Rodney Dangerfield. Rodney, we will miss your attitude and your "I get no respect" whining. You always saw things the way the common man did. We salute you for your tremendous achievements. As Dylan Thomas said,

"And you, my father, there on the sad height,

Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Rage, rage against the dying of the light."
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Format: DVD
After his appearance on Leno recently, it seems Rodney Dangerfield is losing his touch due to age and his admitted pot smoking. He still had it in Back to School, however. This has always been a good way to spend 90 minutes or so to get some laughs. Along with Caddyshack and Easy Money, it's his best work.
Be careful of which DVD version you buy. There are two floating around out there and they both look the same until you make a close inspection of the back cover. MGM quietly slipped this new transfer out there with the same cover without as much as a peep. The original copy was non-anamorphic widescreen and was a poor transfer with some framing issues. The new one is a great improvement with anamorphic widescreen and 5.1 Surround Sound. You have to look at the bottom left of the back cover. You will see 16:9 Widescreen 1.85:1 versus the old one which did not have the '16:9' printed above the word Widescreen. The free booklet with the older copy was nice but the new anamorphic transfer and 5.1 trump the importance of the little booklet included in the older DVD release. I don't know why they didn't throw in the old booklet but its importance is negligible. You don't buy DVDs for booklets anyway.
One more thing. Always buy DVD releases of films in their OAR(Original Aspect Ratio). Don't buy Fullscreen copies if the movie was originally released in Widescreen to theaters. The only time you should buy (Fullscreen, 1.33:1, 4X3) is if that was the OAR, which is usually only television these days and much older films from the early 50's and beyond. Why would you want to watch a film with the sides chopped off? You'll learn to live with the 'black bars' and realize that you're not losing any picture on the top or bottom.
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Format: DVD
Coming three years after making a big splash with his first-ever starring role, in the 1983 Horror classic CHRISTINE, Keith Gordon returned in this, the 1986 Comedy classic BACK TO SCHOOL, starring one of the most beloved comedians of all time, Rodney Dangerfield.
The story actually begins in 1940, where young Thornton Meloni (Jason Hervey, who would become famous two years later as Fred Savage's older brother on the TV show "The Wonder Years") is being exhorted by his immigrant father to stay in school and not to take over his tailoring business. The kid ends up not listening to him and becomes a high school dropout, taking over the business and changing it to a "Tall & Fat Store" while taking the "i" off the end of his last name and making a fortune. The fifty-something adult Thornton Melon (Rodney Dangerfield) is having an awful second marriage to Vanessa (Adrienne Barbeau in full vamp mode), but is proud of his college freshman son Jason (Keith Gordon), whom he thinks is in a popular fraternity and on the school's diving team. Soon after arriving for a surprise visit, however, Jason admits the truth that he's not in a frat, is not popular and is, in fact, the 'towel boy' for the diving team. Jason wants to leave school because it's not going the way he thought it would. The tall, beautiful Valerie (Terry Farrell) won't even notice him, and his roommate and only friend Derek (Robert Downey, Jr.) is a complete weirdo with wild hairstyles that appear to change daily. Rich Dad has an idea: he'll enroll as a freshman himself and that will influence Jason to have a better time and to stay in school!
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