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Mr. Woodcock

2008-01-10 16:39
What it's about:

Self-help author John Farley (Seann William Scott) returns to his hometown only to discover that his mother (Susan Sarandon) has fallen in love with his old high school nemesis, Mr. Woodcock (Billy Bob Thornton) – the gruff, no-nonsense gym teacher who put him through years of mental and physical humiliation. Determined to prevent history from repeating itself, John sets out to stop his mother from marrying the man who had made life miserable for him and his classmates.

What the critics say:

"In this post-Apatow-the-arrested-development-genius world, it can't compete. The only thing worth watching is Sarandon, popping in from a classier reality."
Marc Bernardin, Entertainment Weekly

"Child abuse: har-dee-har-har."
Amy Biancolli, Houston Chronicle

"There's more genuine humor to be gleaned from saying 'Woodcock' over and over again than from watching Mr. Woodcock."
Justin Chang, Variety

"Sharp performances enliven this formulaic comedy."
Stephen Farber, Hollywood Reporter

"Between Mr. Thornton's wry performance and Tami Reiker's nuanced wide-screen photography, you half-expect Woodcock to deliver more than formulaic laughs."
Matt Zoller Seitz, New York Times

"Thornton's straight-faced growl is consistently funny throughout this mild but effective comedy."
Kyle Smith, New York Post

"Though Mr. Woodcock (tee-hee!) starts with that strong enough premise, it never bulks up the plot with comedic muscle and weighs in as a 98-pound weakling."
Matt Stephens, E! Online

"It's not the worst film you'll see all year, but it's not going to wind up on anyone's honour roll, either. To the agents of all involved: must try harder."
William Thomas, Empire Magazine
A self-help author returns home to stop his mother from marrying his high school gym teacher in a comedy that isn't quite as funny as you'd hope.

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