Cory Finley’s second feature film BAD EDUCATION was not released in US cinemas without any support from the corona pandemic, but was commissioned by the pay television service HBO. The crime comedy about a real donation scandal would also have done well in the cinema. We reveal why in our review.
Frank cannot yet estimate the consequences of the scandal…
However, the employees of the school newspaper are a little neglected, but you have to keep this in mind: no large, prestigious newspaper once uncovered this far-reaching scandal (reports like the one from New York Magazine, for example, are all based on the youth reporter’s research Rachel Bhargava), but a small, actually insignificant high school paper with “readers around 15 years old,” as editorial director Nick Fleishman (Alex Wolff, “Hereditary”) emphasized once. The “The Sex Pact” actress can illustrate the gradually increasing realization of her potentially scandal-triggering research with a fine sense of reserved enthusiasm. At the same time, however, she hardly gets any character-building scenes in which she could demonstrate this talent.
“The breathtaking speed with which Finley retells the outrageous events, the always ironic “Did you really think you could get away with it?” look at the main characters and, last but not least, the meticulous unraveling of the circumstances make “Bad Education” a celebration of Lover of classic (journalistic) thrillers, just without the usual heaviness and darkness.”
Hugh Jackman is completely different (“Greatest Showman”) and Allison Janney (“I, Tonya”). While Jackman, as a stumbling authority figure, cuts a similar, if not quite as torn, figure as in “The Top Candidate,” the sudden loss of reputation of Pam, who is actually so resolute, is both tragic and funny; simply because it’s hard to imagine that she really believed that no one would notice the purchases she made at company expense, such as a PlayStation 4 or countless building supplies for her own home. Scenes like this one, in which she tells her niece Jenny (Annaleigh Ashford, “Late Night”) completely callous offers to pay for the expensive gift for her son at company expense, are written so pointedly that you can’t stop shaking your head or smiling.
Conclusion: With his second film “Bad Education,” Cory Finley takes a clever look at human stupidity. However, never without looking down on his characters with disrespect, but with both a wink and a sense of the seriousness of the situation. Jackman and Janney put themselves entirely at his service.
“Bad Education” will be available on Sky Ticket from July 22nd.