Bad Teacher (Blu-ray)
BAD TEACHER is offensive. It’s offensive not because of the excessive use of profanity or the despicable treatment toward children. As an R rated film advertising itself as exactly that, I have no problem with the dark humor. Everyone has the choice to see it or don’t, knowing what they are getting into. No, BAD TEACHER is offensive because it’s a comedy that is not funny, trying to pass shock value off as clever. Unfortunately, it’s never very shocking and it definitely isn’t clever.
As you can guess, BAD TEACHER is about a… bad teacher. Cameron Diaz is said bad teacher Elizabeth, who cares nothing about her job or her seventh grade students. She is shallow, selfish and only out for money. After her rich fiancé discovers her gold digging ways and dumps her, Elizabeth is forced to keep her job as a teacher. I have no idea how she ever got her job to begin with but she will definitely be stuck in her unwanted gig longer. Ignoring the advances of the charming and down to earth gym teacher (Jason Segel), Elizabeth sets her sights on an overly goofy new substitute teacher with a family fortune (Justin Timberlake). It won’t be easy though because her sugary sweet arch nemesis Miss Squirrel (Lucy Punch) is keeping an eye out on Elizabeth.
Believing that only big boobs will land her a sugar daddy, Elizabeth applies all her efforts into making extra money in order to pay for the surgery. Whether it is a provocative student car wash or cheating on her student’s standardized tests, Miss Elizabeth is going to find a way to either steal the money or earn it underhandedly. But you can always count on her to make room for alcohol, drugs and aggressive profanity while caring very little about others. And here lies the problem – Elizabeth isn’t redeemable or likeable in the slightest. There is no way that our loveable cool gym teacher would have any desire for this pathetic excuse for a woman. So the only solution was to make her enemy even more unlikable than Elizabeth, but that character still had the desire to help the students and we are suppose to be rooting against her.
While none of these outlandishly crazy characters are believable, most are downright insulting to real schoolteachers. I’m not saying Diaz is bad, she was fine, however I just don’t think she has the charisma of a leading actress and being “fine” in a comedy isn’t good enough. The supporting characters did make me chuckle a few times. Jason Segel had a couple of very humorous moments but was completely underutilized. Eric Stonestreet who plays Cameron on MODERN FAMILY is extremely funny in a small role as Elizabeth’s butch roommate. And Phyllis Smith who plays Phyllis on THE OFFICE is hilarious as a quiet, unsure teacher. These actors shine in their respective parts, creating funny moments in their poorly written characters.
BAD TEACHER is a poor man’s BAD SANTA. I’m sure that’s just about how the pitch to get the film made went as well. In fact, I foresee many similar stories on the horizon using familiar children friendly authority figures that act in an obscene wrongful manner. Let’s see you could have, “Bad Clown,” “Bad Youth Minister,” “Bad Mommy” and “Bad Pediatrician.” You could even make the family friendly version called “Bad Dog.” I really deserve some sort of kick back when these inevitably get made. If you are looking for a good movie with teachers being bad, I recommend ELECTION or HALF NELSON.
Video: (1080p High Definition 1.85:1) Not surprisingly, the picture looks great as it does for all films that have come out in the last few years.
Audio: (5.1 DTS-HD MA) The sound is also good highlighting the fun score that goes along with teacher’s being bad.
JAMS Yearbook – Hidden Moments: An interactive feature scrolling through the school yearbook and finding out a little more about our favorite teachers and students.
Gag Reel (4:58): A typically bland gag reel where the actor’s laugh at themselves as they mess up lines
Outtakes (3:53): Three not so funny outtakes with one being exceptionally hilarious because of Jason Segel.
Deleted Scenes (5:44): Six scenes on par with the rest of the film. Some of it’s mildly funny but it’s also slightly obnoxious.
Way Behind the scenes with Jason and Justin (5:38): This starts out funny but kind of pitters. Still yet, it’s kind of fun watching the two most talented guys try to riff.
Raising More Than Funds (3:31): Everyone talks about how funny and hot Diaz is in the car wash scene. This is the first of four terrible short featurettes.
A Very Odd Blacksmith Story (2:00): A dumb joke about how the movie is about the blacksmith.
Swimming with the Dolphins (3:35): Everyone talks about how John Michael Higgins as the principal is so great at improv and being funny. A lot of time is also spent on dolphins.
Good Teacher (4:04): Everyone’s idea of what a good teacher is. They actually are somewhat serious here and it is awful. I don’t care what these actors think qualifies as a good teacher.
MovieIQ with BD Live