“2 Great First Day Movies”

Sometimes the first day doesn’t go exactly according to plan. Let’s see what lessons Hollywood University has to teach us about preparing for the worst.

SOUL MAN (1986)

Premise: C. Thomas Howell, hearthrob of the eighties, gets into Harvard Law School. He can’t pay his way, so he applies for a scholarship intended for black students. With the help of some tanner and a Gloria Gaynor wig, he is able to outsmart not only the Harvard faculty, but everybody watching the movie. Notable for its cutting edge score, hitting upon the “Soul Man” theme exactly the right amount of times.

Lesson: If you show up for your first day dressed as a person of a different race, no one (not even James Earl Jones) will know.

GREASE 2 (1982)

Premise: First day of school, Rydell High, 1960-something. Michael Carrington is a British milksop on a high school exchange program when he meets Stephanie Zinone, the wildest member of the Pink Ladies, and it doesn’t take him long to start riding a motorcycle. (The songs in this movie really carry the message home. If you thought the music in the original Grease couldn’t be more overtly sexual, you haven’t heard “We’re Gonna Score Tonight.”)

Lesson: If the first day of school is too boring, dance (and smoke) your way through it.

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