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Class of Nuke 'Em High [Blu-ray]
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Created by the same lunatics who brought you the smash cult classic THE TOXIC AVENGER, CLASS OF NUKE 'EM HIGH takes place in the radioactive halls of Tromaville High School, where a dangerous leak turns great minds into great mutants. Expose yourself to outrageously awesome doses of science fiction, horror action and bizarre humor. This nuclear age movie has something for everyone... and everything. Your entertainment level will shoot right off the meter!
Comparable to the best 80s teen comedy. Put this on the shelf next to BETTER OFF DEAD and REAL GENIUS! --Fangoria Magazine
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At various times good, bad, enjoyable and irritating, Class of Nuke 'Em High is a grade C film that was intentionally made to be a grade C film. The plot concerns a nuclear power plant that's run by a whole team of Homer Simpsons. Not only are they having periodic mini-disasters, but one of the employees has been growing marijuana in a restricted outside area and selling it to kids at the local high school, which is only a quarter mile down the road. The high school kids are exposed to nuclear waste both through the marijuana and through a water supply contamination, and it turns some of them into pulsating radioactive superheroes, disintegrates others, and for the former honor society, it turned them into an overacting group of Mad Max rejects. There is one scene in the movie which is especially bad where supposed actor, Brett Weston, playing a corpse gets gang raped by a bunch of covermounters and can distinctively be seen smiling as he recieves wave after wave of punishment.
A lot of Nuke 'Em High is supposed to be funny, and much of it is. Some of the stuff that's supposed to be funny is simply irritating-this goes for the Mad Max rejects most of the time. Movies like this tend to work better when it's not so obvious that they are trying to spoof genres. When they are trying, it has to be extremely funny in order to work. When they aren't trying-when the filmmakers are trying to make a decent film given their budget, and it still comes out bad, the little unintentionally funny bits are enjoyable. It's the difference of laughing at a faux pas as opposed to watching a bad comedian tell a cheesy joke.
The nuclear plant setting, with a wonderfully fake looking matte painting for exterior shots, is unfortunately underused-the plant employee characters were enjoyable, funny and there was a lot more potential for them. Several other auxiliary characters should have been used more, also, but the two goody-two-shoe protagonists are well cast and do an admirable job.
Classified as horror, Nuke 'Em High doesn't even approach that genre for a large chunk of the first half. That's too bad because it works best when it's violent. The scene with the old lady carrying groceries, the alleyway brawl, the coup d'etat in the principles office, the bathroom fight scene, etc. are all among this films best.
Recommendation: Overall, Nuke 'Em High is a mixed bag, and my evaluation while I was watching it continually vacillated between "bad bad" and "good bad." Troma films fans are bound to enjoy this to some extent, although most fans are more than likely already familiar with this Troma staple. Other than Troma fans, approach this film only if you enjoy cheesy B and C movies. It's not the best "turkey," but it is tasty enough for Thanksgiving.
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