Everyone who went to high school has a story of one guy who attended who was less of a bully and more like a psychopath. The dude everyone was afraid of, cause you weren't sure if he was carrying a weapon every where he went. People tipped toed around the crazy man as he walked down the halls displaying a demeanor that told you he goes to the dump and shoots rats on weekends.
Three O'Clock High is about that nut. Why this film is not regarded as one of the classic 80s comedies is something I'll never understand. All around nerd Jerry Mitchell (Casey Siemaszko) has the unfortunate task of interviewing the new student for his school paper. Jerry makes the mistake of actually placing his hand on his interview subject Buddy Revell, played brilliantly by Richard Tyson. Buddy, who looks way too old to be in high school, challenges the dorky student reporter to a fight at 3 o'clock.
The film then follows Jerry throughout the day as he tries in vain to get out of the fight. Fearing his demise Mitchell breaks into the student store and steals money to pay a football player to take care of Buddy, which ends poorly. He also tries to escape school, but the security guard won't let him leave the grounds. Other antics ensue as Jerry attempts to get out of the fight, but as with most 80s comedy dorks he mans up and faces his tormentor with crowd pleasing results.
Sure the plot is predictable and some of the actors look way to old to be in high school, but it's a charming tale that unlike most teen films of that era doesn't ridicule youth. This film is far funnier than most of those teeny bopper flicks of the 80s and doesn't resort to becoming a pretentious over dramatic love fest.
What this movie did need is more crane kicking. Maybe that would secure it's place in the 80s hall of fame.
"Schools are successful only insofar as they reduce the dependence of a child's opportunities upon his social origins." - James S. Coleman