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Bad Teacher (2011)

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A lazy, incompetent middle school teacher who hates her job, her students, and her co-workers is forced to return to teaching to make enough money for breast implants after her wealthy fiancé dumps her.

Director:

Jake Kasdan
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Popularity
2,034 ( 75)
6 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Cameron Diaz ... Elizabeth Halsey
Lucy Punch ... Amy Squirrel
Jason Segel ... Russell Gettis
Justin Timberlake ... Scott Delacorte
Phyllis Smith ... Lynn Davies
John Michael Higgins ... Principal Wally Snur
Dave Allen ... Sandy Pinkus (as Dave 'Gruber' Allen)
Jillian Armenante ... Ms. Pavicic
Matthew J. Evans ... Garrett Tiara
Kaitlyn Dever ... Sasha Abernathy
Kathryn Newton ... Chase Rubin-Rossi
Igal Ben Yair ... Arkady
Aja Bair Aja Bair ... Devon (Chase's Friend) (as Aja Cheyenne Bair)
Andra Nechita ... Gaby
Noah Munck ... Tristan
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Storyline

When her wealthy fiancé breaks it off, gold digger Elizabeth Halsey returns to middle school: she's an awful teacher but wants to save for breast-implant surgery. She brightens when Scott, a new teacher, turns out to be rich, and she stops showing films and sleeping in class when told there's a bonus for the teacher whose class scores highest on the state exam. Her competition for Scott and the bonus is cheery and tightly wound Amy. Amy digs for dirt on Elizabeth who cheats her way toward Scott's bed and the money. Honesty with students seems to be her only skill. She ignores Russell, a droll gym teacher, who looks on. Will she succeed with Scott and get those new breasts? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

She doesn't give an "F."

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexual content, nudity, language and some drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 June 2011 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bad Teacher See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$31,603,106, 26 June 2011

Gross USA:

$100,292,856

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$216,197,492
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Columbia Pictures, Mosaic See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (unrated)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Elizabeth's sometime, sarcastically stated, catchphrase is "Seriously?!" See more »

Goofs

When Elizabeth is checking her online bank account. The URL reads "/online/banking/account/", but has no domain. See more »

Quotes

Shawn: LeBron is a better rebounder and passer.
Russell Gettis: LeBron will never beat Jordan. Call me when LeBron has six championships.
Shawn: That's your only argument?
Russell Gettis: It's the only argument I need Shawn!
See more »

Connections

References Annie (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

Everything You Need
Written by Jon-Michael Estep
Performed by Kate Booye and Jon Estep
Courtesy of Crucial Music Corporation
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Meh...It's Good for a Few Laughs
12 December 2011 | by brando647See all my reviews

First Santa, now a middle school teacher. I feel as if we're on the verge of a new trend of bad *insert occupation here*. Bad toll booth operators, bad samurai deli clerks…where will it end? Anyway, this is the latest from comedy director Jake Kasdan (WALK HARD) and a decently funny movie with some great moments but finds a major problem in its main character. 2011 hasn't been super strong with comedies; there have been some real good ones (BRIDESMAIDS) but most of them have been pretty forgettable (PAUL). This movie is pretty funny but it still ends on the low end of the spectrum. Cameron Diaz is Elizabeth Halsey, a gold-digging narcissist who has somehow made a career of being a middle school teacher. She believes she's found her way out with a rich fiancé to tend to her every need, but it falls apart when he finally realizes she's using him. Elizabeth is forced to return to her teaching job, where she proceeds to care even less than before. She fends off the advances of gym teacher Russell (Jason Segel) and focuses her attention on landing the new substitute teacher, Scott (Justin Timberlake). Elizabeth realizes that the only way she'll snag Scott's attention is a little self-improvement. Not becoming a decent person or anything, just a breast enhancement. From then on, she lies, cheats, and steals her way to the money she'll need for the surgery; and the only one who suffers is the good teacher (Lucy Punch) who just wants Elizabeth to do her job.

In A CLOCKWORK ORANGE, young Alex (Malcolm McDowell) robs, rapes, and commits horrible acts of violence but maintains a charismatic personality that allows the audience to root for him. Elizabeth Halsey in BAD TEACHER, does not. The "protagonist" in this movie also happens to be the least likable person in the film. As a result, the movie comes off as a little backwards. The character we're supposed to support (Elizabeth) is just a horrible person with absolutely no redeeming qualities presented until the final act of the film. And I mean none. She was a gold-digging fiancé, she's perpetually drunk/high on the job, and she coldly dismisses gym teacher Russell's advances without a glance in favor of stalking the new substitute with the massive bank account. It would almost make more sense if the film focused on Ms. Squirrel (Lucy Punch) living out her dream teaching career when trouble-making Elizabeth comes along and steals her thunder in underhanded ways. Punch should be the protagonist, and Elizabeth the antagonist. But it's not; instead we watch as the film's "good guy" punishes the "bad guy" for nothing other than doing her job and doing it well. Oh well, whatever…it's just a comedy after all. Antiheroes can be fun and it works as long as the film is funny, which it mostly is. The movie is good for some laughs, though it's tough to be anything but distant as you watch everything going down without ever really being drawn into the story.

Cameron Diaz really is the best person for this role. Not because she's horribly unlikeable (I assume she's not) but because she's got a decent comedic background in her films and she's still capable of pulling off drop-dead beauty. In BAD TEACHER, she's the teacher we all wished we'd had in middle school. She really drives the point home when she volunteers to work the school's charity car wash so she can pilfer funds. The supporting cast in this movie is what really makes it enjoyable. Jason Segel is always great as a lovable schlub (which pretty much sums up his gym teacher character) and Lucy Punch is hilariously eccentric as Ms. Squirrel. I've also got to give credit to Phyllis Smith as Elizabeth's friend Lynn. She's probably the funniest part of the movie as the soft-spoken conservative friend who wants so badly to be as cool as Elizabeth but can't bring herself to commit to the debauchery. Honestly, the main character may be crap but the movie does have some real funny moments. I just don't know if there's enough to save it from fading out shortly after watching it. If it helps, I find the movie is funnier the less sober you are when watching it.


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