Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Bad Teacher: Saves it's best for the final period

watching this comedy is a bit like seeing the kid that no one expects to pass ace the final exam.Like Bridesmaids before it, and also helmer by a female star, this latest from the Sony stables starts out cursing a blue streak. Added to that, it's tone for the first hour or so is decidedly mean-spirited.

But a remarkable turnaround ensues in the final third, when lead character Liz Halsey (Cameron Diaz)actually gets what she's after: the requisite funds to to secure bob job that she's convinced will land her dream guy, the new sub (Justin Timberlake, in a delicious piece of Hollywood irony that actually works). The scatology continues of course, but from that point onward, it's tempered with a wry compassion and a weird sort of self-realization and yes, there's even romance - just don't expect too much mush.

Expect to laugh a lot, but the funnies don't really come from the leads: they come more often than not from the support cast - from Diaz' rival in the classroom and for Justin's affections; from her dowdy but genuine colleague; from the kids themselves, one of whom invites his teacher over for Christmas - with disastrously comic results.

Bad Teacher is a movie with kids - not for them. It may irritate you somewhat in the process, but it comes through in the end.

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