Saturday, November 12, 2011

Bad Teacher - DVD Review

***

Starring Cameron Diaz, Justin Timberlake, Jason Segel, Lucy Punch, John Michael Higgins, Phyllis Smith, Thomas Lennon, Molly Shannon and Eric Stonestreet.
Directed by Jake Kasdan.

"IT'S THE ONLY ARGUMENT I NEED, SEAN!"

I enjoy the popularity of that line from the trailer. It doesn't have much to do with anything else in the movie, except reveal a little of the character of the gym teacher (Jason Segel), who seems to be the only person in the movie who sees Elizabeth (Cameron Diaz) for what she really is. A spoiled, selfish, shallow woman who deep-down inside might have a little soul if the right guy came along.

She's not looking for the right guy; she's looking for the rich guy. Some man she can sink her hooks into so she can be one of those Hollywood wives who wear big hats and sunglasses and have her servants follow her with her shopping bags.

But Elizabeth can't seem to land that man. They tend to see through her before she's able to get to the wedding altar. She managed to smile and coast through her first year of teaching and had every intention of getting married and leaving, but when her fiance dumps her, she goes back to her old job, and she has no regard for her students.

But hey, the new substitute teacher (Justin Timberlake) happens to be the heir of an expensive-watch empire. Elizabeth lays forth her plans - raise money to get breast enhancement surgery in order to land him.

This movie owes a lot to Bad Santa, but what's really interesting about this movie is the bad guy is the protagonist. Were this movie from the peppy good teacher's point of view, we'd see how evil Elizabeth is.

Diaz is great in the role, and Segel and Lucy Punch (as the good teacher) are solid as well. It's a pitch-black comedy that never goes the sentimental route. Maybe she'll grow up. No. No, she won't.

2 comments:

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