Higher Learning

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Mixed or average reviews - based on 20 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 6 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: First-term freshmen get a crash course in diversity, identity and sexuality in a bold look at contemporary college life. (Sony Pictures)


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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 20
  2. Negative: 1 out of 20
  1. 80
    Higher Learning is John Singleton's interracial state of today's campuses version of School Daze minus the musical numbers. Surprisingly, it's just as much a gang movie if not more than Boyz 'n the Hood.
  2. The film treats realistic subjects in a stylized way, putting its main energy into exploring ideas rather than building emotional power. [13 Jan 1995, p.B]
  3. 75
    Higher Learning is seriously intended and seriously flawed. Singleton tends to shout his objectives. But in an era of cop-out escapism, it is gratifying to find a filmmaker who is spoiling to be heard.
  4. Aiming at a microcosm of American life comparable in some ways to Do the Right Thing, Singleton can't quite justify or explicate his parting message ("unlearn"), but his passion is exemplary.
  5. Higher Learning starts out as a liberal message movie, but it turns into a demagogic rabble-rouser, a shrewdly incendiary exploitation of these wayward days of rage.
  6. The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    Reviewed by: Rick Groen
    Like an over-ambitious freshman with a term paper, Singleton raises every issue and illuminates none. And, again, this film is better when the combative heat rises, particularly when the long-telegraphed confrontation between Malik and the neo-Nazi finally comes to a (skin)head. [13 Jan 1995, p.C3]
  7. Higher Learning says nothing new or challenging and is too naive to inspire controversy.

See all 20 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Feb 24, 2013
    Higher Learning is a very bold film, that shows the paths of 3 college freshman and how they develop socially during their first semester inHigher Learning is a very bold film, that shows the paths of 3 college freshman and how they develop socially during their first semester in college. They start out as a group of naive kids, who don't even understand themselves, and develop into different persona's that fit the group of friends they choose to fall in with. It's really interesting to see how 3 people, who are all in the same boat, wind up on such different paths, simply as a result of who they choose to spend their time with. I can't really say much more, but eventually their paths will cross with some very interesting results! Expand