.

187

Samuel L. Jackson, John Heard, Kelly Rowan

Directed by Kevin Reynolds
Rolling Stone: star rating
5 0
Community: star rating
5 0 0
July 30, 1997

Samuel L. Jackson is one of the finest actors on the planet, but his film choices aren't always flawless. Take 187 (the number that stands for murder in the California state penal code), a ham-handed melodrama that trivializes an important topic: the role of the teacher in a violent classroom.

Jackson plays Trevor Garfield, a New York teacher who relocates to a Los Angeles high school after being stabbed by a student he had failed. Understandably fearful of the hard cases in his new class, Trevor slowly regains his confidence. But how much? A mystery assailant is harassing trouble-making students. Teacher Dave Childress (John Heard) thinks Trevor is the vigilante Mr. Chips and cheers him on. Teacher Ellen Henry (Kelly Rowan) thinks so, too, and breaks off her romance with Trevor. The script, by former teacher Scott Yagemann, pumps up suspense at the expense of logic and dulls his point. Director Kevin Reynolds compounds a series of previous film felonies (Waterworld; Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves; Rapa Nui) by adding Hollywood gloss to a movie that should be raw and unslick. Jackson, mired in career quicksand, gets sucked right under.

prev
Movie Review Main Next

ADD A COMMENT

Community Guidelines »
loading comments

loading comments...

COMMENTS

Sort by:
    Read More

    Movie Reviews

    More Reviews »
    Around the Web
    Powered By ZergNet
    Daily Newsletter

    Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

    Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
    marketing partners.

    X

    We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

    Song Stories

    “Nightshift”

    The Commodores | 1984

    The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

    More Song Stories entries »
    www.expandtheroom.com