A young African-American student looks intently at a computer screen in a still from 'High School II' (1994) Zipporah Films, Inc.
A young African-American student looks intently at a computer screen in a still from 'High School II' (1994) Zipporah Films, Inc.
High School II (1994) Zipporah Films, Inc.

Presented by ACMI in association with Sydney Film Festival and NFSA

High School II

Frederick Wiseman | U.S.A. | 1994 | Unclassified (15+)

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ACMI Member



Sun 10 Jul 2022

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A tradition-busting New York City classroom provides an absorbing and optimistic setting for Frederick Wiseman’s second film looking at the American high school system.

Each episode of High School II creates a tiny drama of its own, until the film assumes the breadth of a mini-series and the fascination of a trenchant novel of manners.

Caryn James, New York Times

Twenty-five years after he focused his gaze on a lower-middle class school in Philadelphia, Wiseman went uptown, in 1992, to Central Park East Secondary School in Spanish Harlem, New York. Here, learning is not by rote and students are actively engaged in the education process. Scenes of informal discussions between students and teachers, staff meetings and family conferences reveal how this progressive institution’s alternative approach eschews authoritarian teaching. Instead, students are encouraged to deepen their thinking and talk openly. Conflict resolution is on the roster, as are techniques for putting on condoms. King Lear draws comparison with a crime family. Immigration law provokes raucous debate.

Format: 16mm
Language: English
Source: Zipporah Films, Inc.
Courtesy: Zipporah Films, Inc.
Runtime: 220 min

Event duration

220 mins


Unclassified (15+)

Viewers under the age of 15 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.


Cinema 2, Level 2
ACMI, Fed Square

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It Takes Time: Ten Films by Frederick Wiseman

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