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Bad Words

Jason Bateman (who also directed the movie), who is a pretty funny guy, plays Guy, who is 40 years old; at the beginning of the movie, we find him at an 8th grade spelling bee. He has memorized the rules that state that he can participate because, among other reasons, he has never completed the 8th grade. What follows is an almost non-stop dump of offensive, racist dialog from Guy, who clearly has been psychologically damaged (and we find out the story as the movie unfolds) and has absolutely no filters; it is like his id has completely taken over (and the concept of that in a movie is (to me) pretty interesting in and of itself). A young Indian kid (who Guy nicknames Shwarma and is a competitor) befriends him; the friendship that develops between them is one of the redeeming qualities of the movie. Overall, I give it a moderate thumbs up; it kind of trashes spelling bees and all of their rules and conventions in a funny way but does not achieve the same depth of story or humor as Bad Santa (the movie I kept thinking of while watching this). The movie definitely wouldn’t be for everyone- it is pretty vulgar most of the way through. (2014; 3 Stars)

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