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Nov 13, 2006

MPAA Rating:


Run Time:



Justin Long

Jonah Hill


2006 Universal Studios

Still shot from the movie: Accepted.

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Overall D
Run Time90

Making the Grades

It's no secret that getting into a good college is tougher than ever, and Bartleby Gaines (Justin Long) finds that out for himself when he doesn't make the grade. Making matters worse, within his family's high-minded social circles, the high school senior is seen as a severe disappointment. Desperate to want to please his folks and remove the pressures of failure, Bartleby decides to scan the logo from one of the dozen rejections in his bedroom, make a few creative changes, and present his parents with a glorious (although phony) acceptance letter from the newly born South Harmon Institute of Technology.

Yet it will take more evidence than that to convince his suspicious father (Mark Derwin). So Bartleby calls on Sherman (Jonah Hill), one of his peers who was accepted into the real Harmon College, to build a website capable of making his dad believe the unknown school is the real deal. Of course the ruse only becomes more complex when his parents want to drop by the institution and meet the dean. Involving more college-rejected friends, including doper Glen (Adam Herschman), artsy Hands (Columbus Short), and keener Rory (Maria Thayer), along with one of the buddy's relatives (Lewis Black) to act as the institution's dean, the kids manage to fool Mr. and Mrs. Gaines.

The problem is their website fools a few others too. Soon legions of other B-grade hopefuls arrive at the hastily renovated mental hospital to seek a college education. With a bag full of $10,000 tuition checks from dozens of dumb rich kids, Bartleby and his gang of misfits eye a tempting profit within their falsehood. But when the true dean of Harmon College gets wind of what's happening, he begins his own mission to expose the scam.

Squarely aimed at a teen audience, this film promotes the idea that educational institutions are far too particular about who they accept and the programs they teach. Still, describing Bartleby's creation as a "liberal arts" college would be a gross understatement. Classes on this school's calendar include a course in cooking with illicit substances, artistic body painting, and observing girls floating in the school's swimming pool.

Along with these questionable themes, this film offers dozens of expletives and profanities, sexual comments, scenes involving drinking, references alluding to illegal drug use, and dozens of women in bikinis (which appears to be the school uniform for females). Finally, the screenwriter's attempt to bring the ending in touch with some form of reality is so implausible it inadvertently becomes the funniest aspect of the movie. Consequentially, parents are likely to find many reasons to stamp Accepted as rejected.

Discussion Ideas After The Movie

Teaching ideas and topics to discuss about Accepted.

Justin Long, the actor playing the principal character in this film, is supposed to be a high school senior, yet in reality he is 28 years old. Why are directors who make movies about high school students so reluctant to use actors who are in their teens? Do you think we are more accepting of seeing teens doing illegal and sexually questionable activities if they look like adults?

Are post-secondary schools too “picky” about who is accepted? What other educational opportunities are available aside from college and university?

Canadian Movie Ratings

PG Coarse Language
AB 14A Coarse sexual language, Not Recommended For Young Children
MB PG Crude Content. Mature theme. Not Recommended for Young Children.
ON PG Coarse Language. Mature theme. Not recommended for young children
QC G Not recommended for young children.

Canadian Home Video Rating: PG

Watch @ Home

Details on home video releases of Accepted...

Accepted comes to DVD with the following extracurricular activities: A commentary by actors Lewis Black, Justin Long, Jonah Hill, Adam Herschman and director Steve Pink, deleted scenes, the making-of featurette Reject Rejection and the featurette Adam’s Accepted Chronicles. Also supplied are the music videos Hangin’ On The Half Pipe and Keepin’ Your Head Up. Over-achievers can interact on the Self Guided Campus Tour, while the MP3 crowd can plug in the DVD-ROM bonus extras and catch the tunes B Goes To BKE, Uncle Ben’s Theme, B and Hoyt Showdown, Party At BKE, Monica, and B Kisses Monica. Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround audio tracks are available in English, French and Spanish, with subtitles in English (SDH), French, and Spanish.

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