Tuesday, March 25, 2014

BAD WORDS REVIEW

Chopra ( Rohan Chand ) and Trilby ( Jason Bateman )
Jason Bateman (“Identity Thief”) makes his feature directorial debut with the subversive comedy BAD WORDS. He stars as Guy Trilby, a 40-year-old who finds a loophole in the rules of The Golden Quill national spelling bee and decides to cause trouble by hijacking the competition. While reporter Jenny Widgeon (Kathryn Hahn of “We’re the Millers”) attempts to discover his true motivation, Guy finds himself forging an unlikely alliance with a competitor: awkward 10-year-old Chaitanya Chopra (Rohan Chand of “Homeland”), who is completely unfazed by Guy’s take-no-prisoners approach to life.--- Focus Features 

I applied for the sneak preview passes after I watched the trailer. BAD WORDS looked promising. I find it very hard to find comedies that are actually funny. I went in to this movie with very low expectations. I enjoyed Jason Bateman in HANKCOCK, COUPLES RETREAT, and HORRIBLE BOSSES but his last outing IDENTITY THIEF was a disaster. I blame the extremely unfunny Melissa McCarthy for that bomb. Most of my trepidation was due to the children but the R rating gave me hope.

I am so happy I went to the sneak preview. This is the best ADULT comedy I have seen since TROPIC THUNDER. The laughs start early and do not stop. BAD WORDS is relentless and irreverent. If you have a problem with colorful language, mean intelligent put downs, or the psychological manipulation of children do not see this movie. This is a clever film that will make you very uncomfortable.



BAD WORDS does have a heart but the sensitivity means more here than the standard hit you over the head, pull the heart strings, we are going to make you cry, normal Hollywood fare. Never does this movie get weepy, sappy, or overly sentimental.

BAD WORDS is Bateman’s directorial debut and he has hit a grand slam. I am actually hoping he directs again. We will see Bateman next in THE LONGEST WEEK, THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU, and HORRIBLE BOSSES 2.

Kathryn Hahn plays Jenny Widgeon the reporter who is covering the Guy Trilby’s spelling B story. Her performance of the sexy, desperate, journalist was spot on. Widgeon’s frantic need to get the story at all costs, while trying to control her insatiable sexual attraction she gets toward her subject is painful and hilarious.

The intelligence, humor, and the uncomfortable situations of BAD WORDS make this a must see.  

Tony- When Rick told me about this movie BAD WORDS, I did not know what to think of going to this sneak preview. I was ready to dismiss this as some documentary on the use of "BAD WORDS" in today's society. Not sure why but, not having seen any previews or hearing anything about this directorial debut from Bateman I was apprehensive going in. I was familiar with some of his work, although only seeing his performance in Hancock, I was not sure how Bateman would do in this film. I have to say that after the first five minutes of this film I was laughing and knew this was going to be a home run for Bateman.

The intelligent writing and delivery of the humor was spot on. About half way into this comedy, Bateman throws in a nice mix of sensitivity as he builds a hard but touching relationship with co-star Rohan Chand, who plays one of his rival contestants Chopra in the spelling Bee. I thought that would be the end of the comedic element and that this movie was going the route of a tear jerking sap story about Chopra and his dysfunctional relationship with his dad. I was happily proven wrong. 

Trilby at a Spelling B
Batemans well put together use of comedy and drama give this film just the right feel good emotional content that makes this film, in my opinion, worthy of being nominated for best film for the year.  Kathryn Hahn, who plays Jenny Widgeon, the desperate web reporter covering the story of Batemans character forcing his way into this spelling bee, lends a great performance as the supporting role. Her tenacity in uncovering the motives of Bateman while comically satisfying her needs, addresses the underlying story in this comedy which gives this film it's substance. 

BAD WORDS is a must see comedy for adults who do not offend easily. The jokes can sometimes border on the edge but, it's what makes this such a great film to watch. I was glad to have been invited to watch this sneak preview and would go to the theater to watch this again. 

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