Yes, people, Cameron Diaz is quite good at wearing an outfit. Congratulations to her, congratulations to us all. But the woman should not ever, truly, be let near a motion-picture camera. In Bad Teacher—which positions itself as a sort of Eastbound & Down–lite (complete with its own Stevie Janowski character in the form of Phyllis from The Office)—Diaz plays a gold-digging sociopath who takes a job as a middle-school English teacher and proceeds to maliciously fuck over everyone she meets with no consequences whatsoever. Queasy! Hilarious! Look at her! Her thighs are great! She was right all along—she IS awesome! She was probably right about “the Japs,” too.
What the filmmakers don’t seem to understand is that what makes Eastbound & Down work (along with Observe and Report and Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans and everything else in the semipornographic genre-du-jour of terrible-people-doing-terrible-things) is that Kenny Powers is FUCKING PATHETIC. He is not attractive. He is mistaken about himself being awesome. And shit doesn’t work out. And people don’t like him. Plus, and most importantly of all, THAT SHOW HAS ACTUALLY GOOD JOKES.
Bad Teacher tries. There are many legitimately funny people (Jason Segel, Thomas Lennon, Lucy Punch) attempting to be funny in the orbit of Cameron Diaz. Their scenes are a relief, but it is not enough. The rest is a strangely cobbled together almost-narrative in which nothing makes sense (HOW THE FUCK DID SHE GET THROUGH FUCKING TEACHER SCHOOL WITHOUT, APPARENTLY, EVER MEETING AN ACTUAL CHILD!?!?) and Cameron Diaz does things that should get her voted off this island earth posthaste (will somebody PLEASE contact Jeff Probst because he won’t take my calls anymore?). Zzzzzzz, I say. Zzzzzz.
But, yes, she looks great in a pair of shorts. Congratulations, people of earth.
This article has been updated since its original publication.