NewsBlaze search box Daily News header

Mr. Woodcock DVD Review

by Kam Williams

Gym Teacher and Ex-Student Square-Off in Over-the-Top Insult Comedy

As a pudgy seventh grader, John Farley (Seann William Scott) was embarrassed by his overbearing phys-ed teacher (Billy Bob Thornton) who made him strip in front of the class for forgetting to wear his sweat suit. After being driven by nightmares of the humiliating incident to lose all the excess fat, John grew up to write a best-selling book to inspire others to achieve their dreams.

13 years later, Farley, now a famous self-help guru, has been lured back to his hometown to receive the key to the city. But upon his arrival, he's shocked to find his widowed mother (Susan Sarandon) blissfully in love and engaged to none other than the unrepentant Mr. Woodcock. Since the sadistic drill sergeant hasn't mellowed with age, John decides to make it his business to break them up before the creep can become his stepfather.

This scenario sets up the no-holds-barred battle royal which ensues for the duration of Mr. Woodcock, a mean-spirited insult comedy laced with locker room humor. Though the picture has a few funny moments, more of its crude bits miss than hit the mark. Who wants to see Billie Bob Thornton abuse kids for being overweight, for having asthma, or for not being athletically inclined, even if an 11th hour revelation supposedly makes everything okay in the end?

And Susan Sarandon must be very hard-up for decent roles, judging by her one-note performance as Woodcock's dimwitted fiancée. Sadly, the five-time Oscar-nominee has been reduced to playing decidedly underwhelming characters recently, in films like Elizabethtown, Alfie and In the Valley of Elah.

By contrast, it is apparent that the less-discriminating Billy Bob Thornton has embraced the idea of appealing to the lowest possible common denominator. How else can you explain his presence in another bad taste bottom-feeder which might have been better titled Bad Gym Teacher, ala Bad Santa?

Fair (1.5 stars)
Rated PG-13 for crude humor, sexual content, profanity, mature themes and a drug reference.
Running time: 88 minutes
Studio: New Line Home Entertainment
DVD Extras: Deleted scenes, "The Making of" documentary, a theatrical trailer and a featurette entitled "Trauma Tales."

  Please click this get stories by email button to be notified about future stories, and please leave a comment below.

  Please leave a comment here     If it does not display within 10 seconds, please refresh the page

Related Movie Reviews News

The documentary film focuses on the lives of underpaid workers at Manhattan's Hot & Crusty (H&C) bakery where the Latino staff members are underpaid and their complaints are not heard.
A conversation with actor Dolph Lundgren delves into combating global sex trafficking as an action hero on screen, trading in brains for brawn as a former Fulbright Scholar
This spring alone, Zoe has a half-dozen films released in theaters, including the blockbusters Insurgent and Mad Max: Fury Road, as well as Good Kill, The Road Within, Dope and Treading Water. Here, she talks about life and about her latest movies.
Alice, a manic depressive bipolar diehard Oprah fan becomes rich, and creates a TV series about herself, an emotional exhibitionist who couch potatoes love.
Rose sat down to talk about the Ross Katz directed bittersweet dramady, while finishing off an alfalfa burger and diving into an accompanying plate of fries.
And 'how the art world stopped thinking about inequality and learned to love the bling.'

 

NewsBlaze Writers Of The Month


Popular Stories This Month

newsletter logo

NewsBlaze
Copyright © 2004-2014 NewsBlaze Pty. Ltd.
Use of this website is subject to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy  | DMCA Notice               Press Room   |    Visit NewsBlaze Mobile Site