School For Scoundrels
Comedy starring Billy Bob Thornton as a bullying self-improvement tutor. Roger (Jon Heder) is a spineless NY meter-maid who drives a three-wheeled electric vehicle for a living. He's plagued by low self-esteem and anxiety attacks and, in general, is a rather poor excuse for a man. On a friend's advice, he signs up for a secret self-improvement class at the local community college run by Dr. P (Thornton) - a bullying, sadistic, despot; sample line - 'you can't help yourself, because yourself sucks'. When Roger graduates class and starts to get comfortable with his new backbone, however, he finds that Dr. P has taken a shine to Amanda (Jacinda Barrett) the object of his desires. The game, as they say, is ON.
Released to Buy:
25 June 2007
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School For Scoundrels
By Jane Basingdon, Blockbuster.co.uk
“How many of you have self-help books? Okay that's your first problem. You can't help yourself, because your self sucks!”
So how much of a scoundrel are you? How many times have you accidentally thrown a dart into your friends arm with a little more pleasure than you’re supposed to? Ever gotten too close your best friends girl? And how much does it even affect us when we do these things… It’s come to my attention that some people can happily act this way with no guilt and no remorse, so to all you spawns of Beelzebub I give you ‘School for Scoundrels’
Now I can be pretty shy sometimes, but I can get away with it. There aren’t many events in my life that require that abominably shrewd edge, that killer instinct. As long as the Chinese shop round the corner doesn’t close too early on a Monday I can usually keep myself reasonably well reserved. But for our main character Roger, (Jon Heder) his over-whelming lack of confidence and nervous nature is starting to become a serious problem.
He works as meter reader (balls of steel being the main job requirement) and delivering a ticket to someone is not a nice affair for him. This is simply because he crumbles every time someone gets angry with him. This is made worse by the fact that he has developed a crush on his neighbour Amanda (Jacinda Barrett) and making simple conversation tends to make him pass out.
“Every once in a while a shepherd has to pluck a sheep from the heard and challenge him. It lets the man know he’s worthy of leading him.”
Roger decides to go on a simple confidence-building workshop to help with his problem and its through this that he is introduced to bad boy teacher Dr. P (Billy Bob Thornton), a man who believes that he can force a real man out of anyone... Anyone! Things get even more complicated when Dr P sets his sights on Amanda and the two find themselves squaring off against each other with the newly confident nerd on one side and the slick and slimy Doctor on the other.
With a cameo role from Ben Stiller this actually rounds out to be a really funny film. Thornton is great in what is essentially a ‘bad guy’ role, his blatent and uncompromising methods are what keeps the laughs coming and Jon Heder is the perfect person to have as the punching bag. Well worth a watch, enjoy!
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