Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life

2016

Comedy  Drama  Family  Fantasy  

Synopsis


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December 22, 2016 at 11:00 am

Director

Cast

Lauren Graham as Jules
Michael Rapaport as Animation Voice
Tom Kenny as Animation Voice
Rob Riggle as Bear
720p 1080p
675.37 MB
1280*720
English
PG
23.976 fps
1hr 32 min
P/S 201 / 1,015
1.4 GB
1920*1080
English
PG
23.976 fps
1hr 32 min
P/S 143 / 575

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by William McGinn 9 / 10

The best school movie since Max Keeble

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Reviewed by Edgar Allan Pooh 9 / 10

"Picasso once said, 'Everything you can imagine . . . ' "

James Patterson's series about Rafe Katchadorian's middle school escapades comes to the big screen with "The Worst Years of My Life"?book one in the series. Rafe (Griffin Gluck) transfers to a new school where Principal Dwight (Andy Daly) has a list of rules that has turned student's metaphorical "prison" description into reality. Rafe, with the help of his best friend Leo, make it their mission to break every single one of the rules. This is most definitely a tween movie for the age group that does not fit into full-fledge PG-13 films, but feel they're too old to be entertained by Disney/Pixar animation. Enter the mash-up of the two. We're given live-action that takes the 1985 classic, Real Genius, where students rebel against the authority figure in creative fashion, and combines it with the animated narration of the kid's show, Lizzie McGuire, with Rafe's imagination running wild and bringing his art to life. So why did 26-year-old me see this film? A school that wants to extinguish creativity and forces the creative students to rebel to bring back the art. How could I resist? Admittedly I have no artistic talent with a sketchbook or paint, but I write, and I have a close friend who is the type of artist whose heart ached when she watched the principal throw the sketchbook in a bucket of acid. My heart ached too, but that's because I firmly believe art and creativity belong in all schools. True, I was not the target audience, and those suffering through middle school or even high school are more likely to love this movie, but I still enjoyed it. The various pranks, each one more creative than the last, was awesome to watch. The obvious theme of "anything you can imagine is real" definitely hits home. Even with all the pranks the film still has a very cookie-cutter, Disney Channel vibe with the age-appropriate humor and villains who spout ridiculous rhetoric and act more childish than those watching. At one point Rafe and Leo are trying to determine what rhymes with "suck" and we know what they want to say, but they can't for obvious reasons, but that turns into a dramatic pause that places too much attention on the censored language of the PG rating. While the school bully and mom's boyfriend are just obstacles for Rafe to overcome.Everything is on-the-nose with Rafe's comebacks to the bully, the checklist for rules broken, the payback to Carl the bear of a stepfather, and everything falls into place. Rafe shoots to stardom for his pranks, gets the girl, the friends, and wins?not that we'd expect anything different from this type of movie where the kids are misunderstood and adults are out to get them.However, I will admit that when I saw the film I was surprised by the more serious criticism of standardized testing and "teaching to the test rather than the student". As a teacher I have a mixed relationship with standardized testing. I understand the benefits, for students applying to college, schools needing funding, and states trying to determine how they'll measure comprehension. On the other hand, I also feel focusing so much energy on these tests is problematic for teachers trying to teach the students in a way that is engaging and beneficial. Especially when no two students are alike. It's likely most of the "tween" crowd watching the film were too distracted by the antics to catch that message, but there is another surprise to the film that adds another dimension that is impossible to miss. One that the trailer fails to include in its desire to present this film as another classic school comedy. The film is funny, but definitely not as funny as it leads us to believe.

Reviewed by sfgebel3 9 / 10

Not What I Expected

At first, I didn't think I would care about this movie, but when I watched it, everything changed. First, the characters seem so real and fleshed out. Second, it feels more like it is demonstrating life with a few details I'm not going to spoil. Third, it wasn't pandering and was trying to be nice and original. Fourth, this is HILARIOUS!! For being PG, this has more adult jokes than I can think of. Still, it appeals for the younger audience. The characters start off stereotypical but become so 3-d later. Now for my criticism: The principal's defeat didn't feel all that satisfying at all. Second, you would think that the corrupt principal would be forced to resign before the main character went to the school. Did nobody ever complain to their parents about that EVER??? Third & worst of all, the lesson is fine but the fact that they're telling kids should break the authority rules if they don't like the situation their in! Aside from those flaws, it's still a great movie that I recommend for EVERYBODY!!! Trust me, there is comedy for adults & kids that is really funny.

Reviewed by jneubert-14718 9 / 10

A Deep, Lively Film that is Truly Incredible

Based on the best selling novel by the same name, it was widely believed that this would be the next Diary of a Wimpy Kid, sadly it was not. Griffin Gluck was fantastic is his first starring role, but the rest of the cast really didn't have much chemistry, and overall the film just wasn't all that funny. Rafe Katchadorian (Gluck) is a troubled kid, who is sent to his third and final Middle School in the district. It's very strict and if he doesn't follow the rules, he could be headed to military school. Once he gets there, Rafe learns that his principle (Andrew Daly) is beyond strict and decides to get back at him by anonymous breaking not one, but all his rules, causing a school wide rebellion. The story seemed like a good one, but the truth is the pranks weren't all that extreme or funny. The kids in the theater laughed more at the preview before the film than they did at the pranks in the movie. There were also times in the film where you expected the typical crude middle school humor, and while the writers set it up, they never delivered the punch line. That's not the only issue with this film, the kids had some chemistry, but the family didn't. Lauren Graham was terrible, as her character was completely different than that of her kids. She had no connection to them or any idea what was going on with them. But for as bad as she was, it was nothing compared to how awful Rob Riggle was. I have never been a fan of his, but he was beyond annoying in this film, his personality is just so obnoxious and over the top, that the last place he belongs is in a family film. Finally, the whole animation angle brings the movie to a dead stop. Gluck's character is an artist and likes to draw, and at times throughout the film, his drawings come to life in his imagination and take the place of what's happening on the screen, often at the worst possible times. The bottom line, for young actors in a family film, Gluck and Thomas Barbusca did a terrific job, but the story fails to live up to expectations, the humor just isn't there, and the whole thing was full of scenes that should have been left on the cutting room floor.

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