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Cooley High (1975)

Cooley High (1975)
Cooley High

Samuel Goldwyn Theater
8949 Wilshire Boulevard
Beverly Hills, CA, 90211

35mm, Color, 107 minutes.

Directed by Michael Schultz. Produced by Steve Krantz. Screenplay by Eric Monte.

Cast: Glynn Turman, Lawrence-Hilton Jacobs, Garrett Morris, Cynthia Davis.

A tribute to director Michael Schultz.

Hosted by Robert Townsend. With special guests including Michael Schultz, Lawrence-Hilton Jacobs, Larry Karaszewski, Jackie Taylor and Garrett Morris.

It’s 1964 and best friends Leroy “Preach” Jackson and Richard “Cochise” Morris are weeks away from graduating from Edwin G. Cooley Vocational High School. The two boys often skip class to hang out with their friends and cruise around Chicago, much to the chagrin of their teachers and parents. After a serious run-in with the police, however, the boys find themselves entangled in a tough situation with tragic consequences.

Cooley High, with its focus on the coming of age of a group of teenagers, offered a contrast to the Blaxploitation films that had arisen during the late 1960s and early ‘70s. Rather than focusing on larger-than-life protagonists and outrageous crime syndicates, Cooley High depicted the everyday lives and problems of typical urban high schoolers and their families, and helped to usher in a new type of black cinema.