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RUSS TAMBLYN IN JACK ARNOLD'S 'HIGH SCHOOL CONFIDENTIAL'

Year: 1958 Rating: ***1/2 Director: Jack Arnold
Russ Tamblyn is so good in this, so self-assurred and natural and villainously awesome it doesn't seem possible what anyone else watching would figure upon the first ten minutes, and what the entire movie turns into: A Warning Sign for the 1950's youth that includes a teenage girl addicted to pot as if it were morphine...

But all the dated elements aside, and the somewhat forced special guest casting of Mamie Van Doren as Tamblyn's sexy "aunt" (product placement for testosterone) this cult classic, about our confidently rebellious new kid in high school, builds suspense with perfection and includes a terrific car race. And the great directorial flow shouldn't be a shock to fans of Jack Arnold: one of the all time great b-moviemakers ranging from CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON to TARANTULA to THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING MAN. He turns what many call camp into a perfect outing.

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