Bad Education (La Mala educación)
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Filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar takes a look at his own adolescence as well as confronting the issue of sexual misconduct in the Catholic Church in this stylish drama, which was chosen to open the 2004 Cannes Film Festival. Enrique Goded (Fele Martínez) is a Spanish filmmaker who is having trouble settling on a new project when he's approached by Ignacio Rodriguez (Gael García Bernal), who was his close friend when they were schoolboys. Goded, who fell in love for the first time with Rodriguez, barely recognizes the man as his former crush, but agrees to read the short story he's written.… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 88%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"It still exerts an uncanny power: Like the best of Almodóvar's work, it throws you a first-love sucker punch that will stagger your heart, mind, and soul."
‑ Logan Hill, New York Magazine
"Even though Bad Education ultimately seems to escape the director's control, there is no small amount of enjoyment in getting lost in its sexual-philosophical house of mirrors."
‑ Terry Lawson, Detroit Free Press
"Tragic story of church's betrayal; adults only."
‑ Kelly Kessler, Common Sense Media
"...Almodovar's meta-movie teases us with Big Ideas about those of us who love our fantasies so much that we turn them into our realities."
‑ Lance Goldenberg, Weekly Planet (Tampa, FL)
"Almodovar is that rarest of filmmakers -- one whose work becomes more daring with each film."
‑ Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
"Simple melodrama, a not-that-puzzling puzzle of a film noir."
‑ Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel
"Reality, fantasy and cinema interweave with such grace and power that it's often difficult to separate one from the other, which is, of course, the point."
‑ Tom Long, Detroit News
"A dazzling autobiographical blend of Almodovar's career, childhood, and adoration & admiration for the cinema."
‑ Gabe Leibowitz, Film and Felt
"An original story told by one of the best contemporary filmmakers, Bad Education is a mesmerizing movie experience."
‑ Rebecca Murray,
"It's really a greatest hits compilation of Almodovar's own work - all the standout tracks are here, but with none of the context and soul afforded by those connective numbers."
‑ Mark Palermo, Coast (Halifax, Nova Scotia)
"Taken at face value, Bad Education is about molestation, but from a wider perspective, it's about love, loss of innocence and the desperate quest for redemption."
‑ Bill Muller, Arizona Republic
"This is a disturbing film that challenges the viewer's comfort. It also challenges you to keep up as it jumps stylistically from comedy to romance to drama to a film noir thriller."
‑ Jeff Strickler, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"In accounting for Almodóvar's identity as an artist and a man, Bad Education comes together like a bold and far-reaching summation of his career to date."
‑ Scott Tobias, AV Club
"Almodovar's transitions in tone and mood are so slyly executed it's only afterward that the viewer realizes how much ground this ambitious, brain-teasing movie has covered."
‑ James Sanford, Kalamazoo Gazette
"It's a fascinating film that goes off in so many directions that the viewer may have a hard time getting a handle on it."
‑ Daniel M. Kimmel, Worcester Telegram & Gazette
More reviews for Bad Education on Rotten Tomatoes