Monday, 27 June 2011

Bad Teacher: A Salacious, Irreverent Good Time

There are very few comedies on this Earth that crack me up from start to finish. Bad Teacher has joined that select list and takes its place with such films as Caddyshack, Zombieland and The Big Lebowski. Served up raw and dirty, Bad Teacher had me laughing so hard, I know I missed some parts. It is a wild, obscene riot. From the cast to the dialogue to the outrageous situations, I was howling the entire time. And I do not as rule, enjoy comedies all that much. I mean let’s face it, half the time the funniest parts are all in the trailer.

This cast is effing brilliant with amazing timing and chemistry. Cameron Diaz nails the role of Elizabeth Halsey, a teacher who got into the profession solely for summers off and a short work day. From the drinking to the drugs to the fuck off attitude, Diaz is absolutely unrestrained and bawdy as all get out. She develops a whole new vocabulary for lewd while the atmosphere surrounding her and ex Justin Timberlake sparks like the electricity machine in Frankenstein’s laboratory.
Justin shines as the nerdy, corn-fed substitute whose family money catches Elizabeth’s eye and sets off her schemes. From the first frame he appears, he turns on the dork and it flows out of his finger tips. There is one scene where he is playing the guitar and singing in the teacher band called Fifth Period that is sheer awesomeness. I was laughing until my ribs hurt as he played his “original song.” Justin knows how to be a bad musician and make it seem effortless and totally believable.

I cannot say enough about Lucy Punch and Jason Segel. They completely steal some of the scenes. Lucy is Amy Squirrel, a zany, over-the-top perfectionist teacher who cannot stand Elizabeth because of her attitude. She becomes crazed in her determination to bring Halsey to her knees. Her manic facial expressions are genius as is her delivery. Segel is Russell, the gym teacher who has Elizabeth’s number. He knows how bad she is and wants her because she’s just as rude and crude as he is. The two butt heads quite often and the zingers between them are like arrows striking true. Phyllis Smith and John Michael Higgins give A plus performances as fellow teacher Lynne Davies and Principal Snur, collateral damage in the war between Elizabeth and Amy.

Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg’s script is freaking epic. The dialogue is raw, licentious and so smart, with one liners and sight gags that make you sit there in awe of the fact that they actually went there. It takes middle school to a level of filth never seen on screen before and revels in it, flipping the world the bird. There are inevitable comparisons to School of Rock, but Bad Teacher is what that film could have been, had it not hobbled itself for the almighty PG-13 rating. There were a lot of situations in here that rang true for me and that is part of the brilliance of this movie. Junior High, parent-teacher conferences, fundraisers, etc. all suck out loud and how freaking awesome it would be if we could get away with the shit that went down here to relieve the boredom of it all.

Bottom line, if you like your humor dirty, sexy and wild, then you will have one hellagood time.

10 comments:

Nebular said...

I was planning to see "Bad Teacher" this week, but then I realized that "Transformers 3" is out this week too, so this one has to wait a few more days.
"Dirty, sexy and wild" is good enough for me to give it a shot. I love Cameron, she's so charming and likable, and a decent actress as well. Thanks for the review, Mel - it was so fun to read. Excellent!

Melissa Bradley said...

@Nebular By all means see Transformers 3 first. Special f/x trumps anything else as far as I'm concerned. :)

I'm happy you enjoyed my review. I loved this movie and it really delivered on the laughs. You will have a great time when you get to see this. :) Cameron is awesome in here, giving one of her best comedic performances.

DEZMOND said...

he he I could literally imagine you laughing your heart out while watching this film, Melsy :)And I love how the actress playing one of the characters in the film said Sarah Palin was her role model :)

Melissa Bradley said...

@Dez Oh I did have such a great time. I think that's awesome Sarah Palin was inspiration for one of the characters. I bet it was Amy Squirrel, she was very Palin-esque in her obsession with bringing the other side down. ;) I hope you see this because Justin and Cameron rocked it.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Rivals Zombieland? Really?

Matthew Vanacore said...

Oh nice! My expectations were somewhat tempered for this, but it seems to have made great comedic strides. Any film that conjures up memories of The Big Lebowski ought to be watched immediately. Needless to say, I'll be watching this with renewed enthusiasm. Thanks.

Melissa Bradley said...

@Alex There are those who will call me crazy for that, but in terms of how much I laughed, yeah Bad Teacher is up there as far as fave comedies. I know it's not getting great reviews, but I literally cracked up from start to finish. So I'm in the lunatic minority I guess. :)

Melissa Bradley said...

@Matt Believe it or not The Big Lebowski did come to mind when I left the theater. In terms of laughs, Bad Teacher delivered just like that movie did way back when. There was just something about this film that struck my funny bone and I look forward to seeing again just to see what I missed. I think you'll enjoy this very much.

Major.Mack said...

unless they get into some serious debauchery i want nothing to do with it.

Melissa Bradley said...

@Mack There is some serious debauchery in here so you may want to give it a try. I thought I wasn't going to like it and I did.