, James Belushi
Think of this as an environmentally correct Dangerous Minds
: A peppy science teacher (Berry) cajoles an ethnically diverse group of underachieving high-schoolers into believing they can be winners. The kids here are self-described "lolos" (lowly locals) in Hawaii who, with prodding from Berry, design and build a solar-powered car. They win a local race and then compete in a 2,000-mile race across Australia. Along the way they learn about pluck and perseverance. Never again will anyone kick sand in their faces.
No surprises here. But Berry and Belushi (as a shop teacher who goes from doubter to believer) cruise along as if this amiably funky little film was actually going to boost their careers, the teen actors keep their hormones in check, and the cars are cool. (PG)