Higher Learning
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Customer Reviews:

  • One Of Singleton's Best
    When released back in 1995 Higher Learning painted a potrait of how colleage really is. As someone who is from the east coast and goes to colleage in the south I'm could easily relateo everything that Malik experienced. You watch this film, and think, oh, college was never like this when I was in it. True, however, John Singlton likes to make films that many other directors can not make, thus because their imagination of things needs to focus on the basics in life. What excaly does that mean? Well, the story is based on one very hard and evil thing:racism. It's in the world, and some people go around there lives, the word racist doesn't even cross their mind. Singlton just makes films that are gut wrenching, and he so does not fail with Higher Learning. There are three main characters: Malik, Remy, and Kristen. Malik, is played by Omar Epps, (love and basketball), he's on the school's running team, and if he doesn't start paying, he can say bye, bye, bye, to the team. Remy, is a shy person, he tries to make good grades, like a normal person. About halfway through the film, he falls in with a bunch of skin-heads, and they decide to get even with the school. Kristen, is played by Kristy Swanson (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), and she ends up raped about 20-30 minutes into the film. Her roomate, whom is black, finds out, and they turn to her friends, including Ice Cube, and they of course, find the guy, and try to beat the living crap out of him, only to be stopped by police on the campus. The whole film is not based on black verses white, it takes a look into people, their fears, hopes, and dreams. Kristen goes to a support group, run by a girl named Taryn (Jennifer Connelly), whom finds herself, uh, attracted to Kristen. The story finally ends in a bang litterally above all great film great story great ending nine out of ten stars one of Singltons best do not miss the terrific film ...more info
  • A Very Enlightening Movie
    I think this movie was outstanding....Not only does John Singleton show you the ignorance of racism on the parts of both blacks and whites but he went even further as to address the insecurities of women and sexuality and the need to be accepted by your peers....this movie gets two thumbs up....I wish more people could understand his message and pass it on....We all think we are different but this movie proves we're all the same....more info
  • 3 stars for entertaining me
    Jennifer Connelly plays a lesbian, Kristi Swanson plays a sexually confused college student, Ice Cube & Busta Rhymes play black power militants, Michael Rapaport plays a confused nerdy college student who gets wooed by Nazi Skinheads, Tyra Banks plays a brainy track star (as does Omar Epps without the brainy-ness), the guy from "Dazed & Confused" plays the leader of a gang of Nazi skins that number about 4 members, Laurence Fishburne plays a know-it-all professer...the end....more info
  • John Singleton's Best!
    There is only one thing to say: I absolutely loved this movie. Omar Epps was wonderful and the rest of the characters were awesome. Thanks to John Singleton for introducing Omar Epps to the big screen....more info
  • Higher Learning was a great movie
    I think this movie was great, it is definitely one of my favorites. I think all the characters work well together and it brought to light a lot of issues that are still going on today. It also had a lot of positive messages in it. I would highly recomend watching it if you have not already....more info
  • Higher Learning
    I liked Boyz n the hood and this movie,I liked how Malik and Remy really left each other pissed off in scenes.Near the end Remy said he wanted to build things he wanted to be an enginear(I don't know the correct spelling)But you know because of the shooting he did it was all over.If only he didn't meet his Jerky friend Scott,Remy wouldn't have become a neo-nazi and kill.This movie was real entertaining....more info
  • El Stupido!
    A waste of effort. A waste of film and video tape....more info
  • another Singleton powerhouse
    though it deals with a lot of racism and depicting Nazi's in here, it deals a good job with problems that people have. Epps does a great job in the title role and Michael Rapaport is really evil and he is also the one who kills Tyra Banks at the end which is one of the most powerfulest scenes in that movie and Epps watches her die and then he runs to go find Rapaport. Fishburne as the Professor is again always good in roles. Ice Cube also does a good job as well. other actors like Kristy Swanson and Jennifer Connelly appear as well....more info
  • Love it
    Omar Epps is becoming a household name in the acting community. Omar and Cuba Gooding are the future of young black actors. This movie deals with racism on a college campus, we all know racism is everywhere, but John Singleton reached out and showed us another side of it (a college campus!) Great movie that shows a famous quote from Malcolm X "the man has a way of making the criminal look like the victim and the victim looking like the criminal." Watch this movie and you'll see that quote come alive!...more info
  • Perfect!
    I love this film with a passion. I also like the director (a black man) who made it such a classic. This movie is the best movie that regards race and sex relations......perfect....more info
  • Verry Powerful movie
    This is one of my favorite Jhon Singleton Movies. This Movie is Better than I expected, I thought it would be like Do the right thing but it was much better. Omar Epps, Tyra Banks, Lawrence Fishburn, Michael Rapaport, and Regina King did a great job in this movie too....more info
  • Higher Learning
    This is the tragic tale of a group of high school students, that have been seperated by their beliefs and feelings. Excellent directing and acting from pro's such as Swanson, fishburne and John Singleton as the director make this film seem so close to reality. I saw it on Television but was still captivated by it's realistic style....more info
  • One of the best movies ever
    Singleton wasn't tring to put too many messages in one movie. he wasn't even trying to put any messages in it. all he wanted to do was open the eyes of america to the harsh reality of what is was and is like to be young in america, what nobody wanted to talk about, the racism, the sexism all the prejustice, the goods and bads of the american education system. those aren't messages they're realities. singleton didn't make the movie for you to think, just for you to see....more info
  • It's just like the Columbine Shooting
    This movie could be the blame for the Columbine shooting reasons why. It has a white kid name Remy who started out as living in his dorm with black kids when ever they play their music loud he's tring to study and if he would blasted his music loud while they were tring to study they would beat him up, I don't blame him for moving out. His next roomate is a white kid he thinks of him as a loser cause he always see's him as a lonely person hanging by himself. He all most got beat up at a frat party when he went up to another white kids saying how good was the sex which was rap. Then he decideds to join the Neo Nazis's, what's the biggest mistake he made was stepping up to Malik talking bad about the black panters cause Malik wore the shirt. Then Malik went to Remy's room calling him a wimp Remy couldn't take it so he trash the whole room his roomate didn't like it when his stuff was trash then Malik came back grabing Remy then Remy grabed a gun pointing at Malik then took off. In the end Remy started shooting up the school then kill himself. It's said to see all this happen to a good kid who got mix up in the wrong crowed....more info
  • pretty good could have been better
    John Singleton had the right Idea except for one thing: he had to many going on at once.i liked the way he tackled Race,Sex&class issues but he tried to speak about everybody all at once and it hurts the film.now Michael Rapport does a good job.OMar Epps does a fantastic job.why can't this Brother get any Love? He can Act.he should have gotten a Nomination or two by now.Ice Cube was alright.he was funny.Busta Ryhmes was ok.Laurence Fishburne is almost forgotten here.that's the Directors fault.a great Actor Like Fishburne almost forgotten? and REgina King is one of the most Underrated Actresses ever.everything she is in she turns it out.like Epps she should have at least been Nominated a couple of times.now the downside as well.why another Pretty face non-acting person? first Janet Jackson in Poetic Justice was bad enough now Tyra Banks? these Ladies are fine and what not but they have no acting skills what so ever.it's cool to have Beautiful Women in the film as long as the main one can act.Tyra like Cindy &Janet have no business in a Lead role.so overall it's a hit&miss film....more info
  • some stars from boys n da hood went 2 college
    this was a very acted movie with powerful performance from larry fishburn da teacher omar epps student ice cube college undergraduate da pretty kristy swason (top model) tyra banks (accomplish actress) regina king and last but not least michael rapaport with guess star appearance from da very attractive jennifer connelly and (1 of da best rappers) busta rhymes who adds comedy 2 da movie this movie was about omar epps a talented track and field performer struggling 2 keep up with his grades n skool and falls n love with his classmate tyra banks da other story is between da different lives from da blacks and whites on campus who r prejudice toward each other n da movie whenever da white party have a party da cops let them party on but when da black people have a fiesta da cops don't allowed because they r racist omar epps and michael rapaport both show great acting chemisty as they started out as regular classmate then begin 2 hate each other as da movie gets deeper and deeper larry fishburne plays omar's immigrant english teacher who guides and explains 2 omar about how da college is da preview of da realworld ice cube plays da guy who has been left back from yrs but has a lot of wisdom and experience who tries 2 guide omar 2 da correct path ...more info
  • GARBAGE
    One of the worst movies ever made.All the black students are hip,all the white students are nerds.The black groups of students are cool, the white groups are Nazi's.Yeah,really great movie.Singleton can only live off boys in the hood for so long.Whose A worse "actress"? Tyra Banks or Janet Jackson? Seems pretty even...more info
  • Great movie!
    I love Higher Learning because it makes you think and it shows you the concequences of being racist. Higher Learning is a film that is not to be missed. Its about three students that come to Columbus University and well, they get a tast of the real world. Buy this movie. It had great preformences from Fishburn, Epps, Connely,Rapaport and Cude....more info
  • Excellent movie
    I saw this movie when it came out. Now that it is over a decade later I still think it is an excellent movie....more info
  • Good premise, lousy execution
    Welcome to Columbus University. Where students are divided among racial lines. Where security regularly harasses black students. Where neo-nazis and the black panthers go to recruit new members. Where interracial and homosexual couples have to fear being attacked. Where campus shootings are bound to happen.

    A movie about reace relations in college was a great idea and there are good performances from the leads in the film. The movie made some great points about students needing to appreciate the opportunities college brings them and taking responsibility for their own lives. However it also puts the characters at such extremes that it makes a totally unrealistic portrayal of college life. If this is what the writer went through in college than the university should be ashamed....more info
  • A SUPERB MOVIE!
    I think, unfortunately, this movie has depicted what real life is going on around campuses. The people tend to segregate themselves to their own race, etc. Which I tend to see around colleges and universities. I am not saying this happens all the time, but happens nonetheless. In short, this is very very close to the truth about LIFE!?!...more info
  • Life imitating art imitating life....
    I highly recommend that all high school graduates see this movie before they attend college. The brochures and campus visits can never prepare you for the hardcore reality of campus life. This movie did a great job in bringing the hardcore issues into the light. I enjoyed hot it showed college life from all racial and ethnic perspectives. As a college freshman who was under the 90210 college experience impression, this movie sure did give me a wake up call....more info
  • Singleton-ed out.
    Singleton lightens up on the militantism and anti-establishment attitude that plagued so much of Boyz N Da Hood. Boyz was a microscopic view of the world, while Higher Learning is a macroscopic view.

    My favorite storyline was Kristy Swanson's. While watching an HBO special of this years ago, Singleton said he wanted a "REAL" white girl to play the role of Kristen. He proceeded to tell the story about how on one day he was wearing a Malcolm X shirt and Kristy Swanson asked him was that himself on the shirt. She got the role. She should have gotten poked in the eye instead, but anyway...

    Tyra Banks is good in this and so is Michael Rappaport.

    Ice Cube spits knowledge about the enslavement and oppression of blacks, yet he comes off more as a bully than a deep thinker and distributor of wisdom. He gets off intimidating his white neighbors by purposely playing his music too loudly, then acts threateningly when confronted about it, or about anything. Busta Rhymes is here to utter "white boy!" a few times and to whip a little "white boy" butt. Other than that, he's useless. And this is my one big complaint about the film: the behavior and thoughts of the black characters are at times just as bigoted and reprehensible as the white characters' yet, Singleton makes it clear they should not be judged as problematic or troubling, but as misunderstood or justified actions and thoughts of angry black people who have a right to bully people just because the world isn't fair to them.

    The film doesn't deliver on everything it sets out to do, but its heart is in the right place....more info
  • Great Movie
    Being a college guy I had to see this movie for Kristy Swanson(Dude, Where's My Car?), she is so hot. This is a great movie and all to true. The great acting of all the stars made this movie a unforgetable one. I also liked the fact that Jay Ferguson was cast in the role of "Billy", he is so hot. (...)...more info
  • Total liberal propganda..
    How people say this is the way it it is in the real world its easy to are still in college and have never lived in the real world. There will always be some racism and liberal/conservative disagreements and may at times come to violence its been in this world many years and would probably not be as big a deal if the media and etc would stop making it a big idea. But this movie could have been much better It seemed to me the black people were the stronger people and but we were all made to feel sorry for them and the white people were all confused and total wimps and this movie seemed racist against whites. This is no way to deal with racism. People need to stop bringing it up in these stupid movies and life in general and racism will go away in time....more info
  • Higher Learning...Question The Knowledge
    Date Rape, Racism, Sexism, Neo-Nazism, Elitism...This Ambitious, Issue-Packed Look At The Social Turbulance Of A Ficticious University Campus Certainly Deserves An A+...John Singleton Depicts The Waywardness Of The Modern World From An Utmost Pessimistic Vantage, However This Film's Bombardment Of Socio-Political Issues Is Very Well Strung Together. Blending Romance, Drama And Social Comment It Will Weave A Tapestry Not Soon Forgotten...Main Players Include An Athelete (Omar Epps), A Lesbian Actevist (Jennifer Connelly), Campus Police, A Wise Political Professor (Laurence Fishburne), And Skinheads...Very Provocative And Powerful......more info
  • Learning, indeed.
    This movie is supposed to be so slanted toward the extremes of racism, homophobia, and sexism that it really should enrage any viewer. Singleton has many themes and many issues involved in this movie and for good reason, because it is representing a heightened college experience.
    Many actors in this movie are great. Cole Hauser as the leader of the Skinheads is so terrifying with just his voice. Jennifer Connelly as the lesbian is almost ridiculously good for the role. Kristi Swanson plays wide-eyed well but also a little too naive. Omar Epps carries his far share.
    The extras on the DVD are okay. The commentary is not that informative and Singleton sounds kind of like a dirty old man at times, but when the talks about what he was trying to do with this movie you can honestly agree with him. He pulled it off. But the caricature nature of all the characters does leave things a little flat.
    Good movie though....more info
  • Dreadfully oversimplified
    John Singleton had the right idea as he appealed to the college educated youth to forget the prejudices we have grown up with and think for ourselves concerning differences among people. What I don't understand is why he felt the need to portray such radical extremes in his characters, thereby isolating real life experience from his over-inflated film. If his goal was to produce a thought-provoking movie, what is the point of making the final showdown a battle between blacks and skinheads? I am not "learning" anything new by viewing cinematic tension between these two groups. It isn't a new development that Nazism is built on fundamentals of racism, ergo the film's climatic sequence is far from interesting.

    The director relied too heavily on college stereotypes to bring anything fresh to the feature. Even the talented Omar Epps and Michael Rappaport couldn't save a film that cast them in such limited roles. Laurence Fishburne serves as the director's voice (complete with goofy accent and oral fixation), and there is no sense of subtlety surrounding his message. On many college campuses, especially in the cravenly Politically Correct 1990's, racism is more apt to take on the form of glances, whispers, quiet jokes and invisible battle lines rather than loud slurs and gun-swinging farm boys in Doc Martens. An enemy that is harder to see is the where attention needs to be drawn.

    Furthermore, Singleton attempted a portrayal of women's issues as a movement that is also split between racial lines. White women's issues were completely isolated from black women's issues. This was the most compelling aspect of the film, but the director did not seem to move towards resolation of this split. This issue he was content to leave as is while following through with the over-dramatized plot line.

    I only hope Singleton is able to regain the potential he demonstrated in Boyz in the Hood for his future projects....more info

  • 2 thumbs up!
    When this movie was released in 1995, I then was a graduate of high school, on my way to College and unaware of the problems that MAY exist in a college/university setting. Singleton did a wonderful job displaying every inche of whats going on on our AMERICAN COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITY. Rappaport, Epps, Swanson, Rhythmes and Cube all represent in some way or fashion our college freshmen. This is a moving, thought provoking, powerful, eye opening, emotional, truthful blockbuster that I recommend every entering college/university student AND their parents watch before packing their bags for HIGHER LEARNING....more info
  • Higher Learning....A Disappointment or Educational Message?
    Ok, so we got the picture, racism, rape, homosexuality, basically ignorance in society. However, some of the issues were either too cliche' or should have been edited out. The lesbian relationship or lack thereof was way too A-B-C, the rape was obviously not emotionally constructed in certain points and then too emotionally constructed in others, the racial controversy was the same way. At a certain point in the movie which just seems to bounce from storyline to storyline; you just want to close your eyes and wish the credits were rolling...Sorry John but this one is one in which just didn't go in depth as I thought it would. There should have been more passion in this movie and I just didn't feel it......more info