Student Seduction April 29, 2011Posted by Rusty in 17-20, 20-24, student seduction.
Fact: I have never seen an episode of Saved by the Bell. I saw a Saved by the Bell TV movie where they all went to Vegas or something, but not a single episode. I guess there are Zach Attacks and Slater is a jock with a heart of gold. And we all know about Jessie’s drug freak out and Screech and all of that. Whatever. That show passed me by.
But oh my goodness do I love Elizabeth Berkley. You know why. Showgirls is one of the greatest movies ever made. If Black Swan (which I also loved) is a dancing movie on PCP, then Showgirls is a dancing movie on a glorious cocktail of cocaine, ecstasy, and boner medication. I know that the line between liking something ironically and liking something legitimately gets very blurry around these parts, but make no mistake: Showgirls is the best.
(Tangent: In high school Kate and I went to the local movie theatre and bought movie snacks like popcorn and Oreo smoothies. Then we rented Showgirls. It deserves the red carpet treatment every single time.)
So an Elizabeth Berkley Lifetime movie about seduction? Count me in! Surely a movie starring someone we love will be great! Like, a sexually focused movie starring our beloved Lizzy Caplan can’t be bad, can it?
And it breaks my heart to inform you that we have two duds in a row. Student Seduction is one of those movies where nothing happens. Not even Nomi Malone could save this mess.
Ms. Berkley plays Christie Dawson, a first year chemistry teacher married to a young doctor. She is young so other teachers don’t like her so much. Criticisms involve her jeans being too tight (they are not) and buying pizza for her homeroom. The humanity!
When the honor student/quarterback/BMOC is flunking Ms. Dawson’s class, his rich parents try to peddle their influence to allow him to drop chemistry after deadline. Ms. Dawson stands firm and offers to tutor the BMOC, Josh, after class. Josh takes Ms. Dawson (no! don’t be stupid!) out for a veggie burger as thanks.
Somewhere in there Josh bones his girlfriend and then gets realllly pushy when he doesn’t get seconds. Also Christie is upset that her husband is working double shifts and she REALLY doesn’t want to get pregnant.
Some more miscellany: Josh’s girlfriend writes “slut” on some other girl’s locker and Josh helps Christie start her car after it won’t turn over. He starts creepily calling Christie by her first name and she puts a kibosh on any conversation that isn’t about ions.
I just described the FIRST HOUR of this movie. What a slog.
After a teacher swim, Josh sneaks up on Christie and pushes her against a wall and kisses her. He gets a slap for that romantic gesture and is reported to the principal. The principal doesn’t do anything because she is an authority figure in a Lifetime movie and it’s WOMYN v. THE WORLD.
Then Josh escalates by breaking into Christie’s house and assaulting her. He leaves pre-rape which was courteous I guess, but, still. Christie goes to the police. The next day the police arrest Christie for having an affair with Josh. His parents concocted some story about a months long affair and Christie’s teachers all verify it with stories of veggie burgers and blue jeans.
Oh and Christie is pregnant. It’s Lifetime so even though she doesn’t want it and there is a very real possibility of getting afterbirth in YOUR JAIL CELL, abortion isn’t even mentioned.
Even though Christie has been suspended without pay, she still has access to the school’s intranet. She realizes that the girl who had “slut” written on her locker, Jenna, missed six weeks of school last year for health reasons and that she used to date Josh. She obviously was raped by Josh. That gets confirmed but Jenna refuses to testify because Josh’s parents are buying her a full ride to Dartmouth in exchange for her silence. The weird part? CHRISTIE IS TOTALLY OK WITH THIS. It’s cool that I will have to move and register as a sex offender for the rest of my life and my career is dead and Josh can go a-rapin’ to his heart’s content. It’s more important to spend your winters in Hanover, New Hampshire.
Ugh. Finally Christie decides to take a misdemeanor plea bargain. With only two minutes left in the movie, I thought that was a strangely pessimistic way for Lifetime to go. Neat.
But, no. Jenna comes around, tells Josh’s parents off, and the next scene is Christie teaching a chemistry class. Fin.
A he said/she said court case sounds kind of interesting, right? Like, maybe it could be compelling television? Well you, viewer, are shit out of luck.
I’ve seen worse?
HEY! IT’S THAT GUY!: 6
Kate and H$ are engaging in some kind of H!ITG inflation war. Ten points for just Lizzy Caplan!? Please. (Although worth it for H$ admitting to watching True Blood while defending Kate’s score. Yikes.) A movie needs more than one famous person to earn a ten in my book. This movie doesn’t have that. And, real talk, Elizabeth Berkley is not that famous.
The doctor husband here is a little bit off. He’s an ally, but he’s the ally who wants to take a plea bargain. But then he wants to compel Jenna to testify against Josh. Basically, he’s supposed to be a good husband but his wife disagrees with literally every single thing he does in this movie.
The rich asshole villain and the one woman vs. an insane world plot also contribute to the high Lifetime score.
GRAND TOTAL: 20
This movie either needed more students or more seduction. A huge disappointment.
But it inspired me to watch Showgirls one more time. Of course I own it on DVD. Why would you even bother to ask?