FILM – Bad Teacher
Posted by Vivek on August 20, 2011 | No Comments
Gene Stupnitsky, Lee Eisenberg
Cameron Diaz, Lucy Punch, Jason Segel, Justin Timberlake
She sleeps in class, wears revealing clothes to school, smokes marijuana in the school car park, uses swear words among children, steals test papers and is saving enough money to get bigger boobs so she can land herself a rich man to marry. This is Elizabeth Halsey (Cameron Diaz), the ‘bad teacher’.
She has a colleague baying for her blood in Amy Squirell (Lucy Punch) and a gym instructor vying (more like dying) for her attention in Russell Gettis (Jason Segel). But she is aiming straight for the new recruit Scott Delacorte (Justin Timberlake) who is supposed to be swimming in money. Will he, won’t he? It soon becomes – will she, won’t she?
As is obvious she will go through several obstacles in meeting her goals and will have a change-of-heart somewhere in between that will alter her perspective to everything in life. So she does. She teaches a bit and learns a lot.
She isn’t endearing by any stretch of imagination leave alone likeable. Everything that happens with her and to her is strictly a ‘film’ world, far-removed from reality or a purpose beyond entertainment. But the film is fast and swirling, helping us conveniently forget that it is as shallow as its principal character.
That’s why it is easy to put up with a foolish Principal and a hyper-active co-teacher. It is easy to imagine children as cardboard cut-outs and stereotyped families. But it is all in good humour so one plays along.
The films keeps one hooked but with Cameron Diaz’s sizzling screen presence it isn’t difficult to do so anyway. In keeping with the charged momentum of the film and the tone of lightness, her ‘transformation’ is subtle too and that probably is the best part of this half-baked film. Also thankfully she doesn’t transform when she finds love, she finds love only after she has begun transforming. This sort of maturity is a hard thing to find in bubble-gum films but maybe it is this approach that sets it a tad bit above its counterparts.
The film has over-done performances by all (except maybe Jason Segel) especially Lucy Punch and Ma’m Diaz herself. However, the tone of the film itself is over-the-top. If it’s funny or not, depends on how much you like the old OTT, but yes, it will probably worth the popcorn!