Movie Review: The English Teacher (2013)



Another Julianne Moore’s film, but this one got silly really fast. That’s why it was kinda under the radar when it was out… Since this was a lacklustre film similar to another of the same genre, but funnier: In & Out (1997), I shall keep this short.

A small town English teacher, Linda Sinclair, thoroughly admired by her students, but nonetheless fails in forming lasting relationships. She is a loner, lives in a really BIG house, and self-classified as a spinster. The film starts with fairy-tales like narration by Fiona Shaw; perhaps director, Craig Zisk, and writers, Dan Chariton and Stacy Chariton do want us to treat this as a caricature of the live of Ms. Sinclair, a middle-aged small town woman sadly has never seen the world. On top, one who naively believes she could have been an artist, but because….

One day she meets one of her graduated students, Jason Sherwood (Michael Angarano), instead with open arms, she pepper sprays Jason; She thinks he is robbing her. After much commotion between the two, she finds out it is Jason, one of her top students at least 4 years ago. Jason graduated from NYU in dramatic writing, but was disillusion for no one wanted to read his play.

Ms. Sinclair naturally goes into a mentor mode, and commits to read his play. After much smile, grimace, and tears, she convinces the school drama’s teacher, Carl Kapinas (Nathan Lane), aka “Ka-penis” nicknamed by Jason, to give it a reading as well. As expected, Carl loves it and wants to produce it. The play’s name  is “Chrysalis”.

However, Jason’s father, Dr. Tom Sherwood (Greg Kinnear), only knows that his son agrees to change his career, and to become a lawyer. He wants to stop his son from wasting more time. After reading the play many times, Linda concludes Dr. Sherwood is one of the characters in the play; he is an alcoholic, who abuses and controls his son’s life.

Now, Ms. Sinclair is adamant to free Jason from his father’s tyranny at all cost.

While everything was making perfect sense at first, suddenly the director dropped an irony bomb: Jason has sex with Ms. Sinclair. Why an irony? cause if it were Mr. Sinclair and Janet, no one would care! From that instance onwards, the film became a farce and ended – as expected – with an unbelievable “happy” narrated finish!

SKIP…it’s really not a fairy-tale.




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s