Bad Words Synopsis
A mean-spirited 40-year-old (Jason Bateman) exploits a loophole and enters a national spelling bee.
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Movie Reviews

Critic Ratings

56
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91

Entertainment Weekly

By Owen Gleiberman
Bateman deserves props for sustaining Bad Words as a little balancing act between sulfurously funny hatred and humanity.
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88

Rolling Stone

By Peter Travers
Bad Words, starring Jason Bateman in a tour de force of comic wickedness, takes sinful pleasure in rubbing our noses in the toxic joys of...
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88

Chicago Sun-Times

By Richard Roeper
Bad Words is the kind of pitch-black dark comedy that makes you wince even as you give up on stifling the chuckles.
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80

The Hollywood Reporter

By John DeFore
Choosing it for his debut as director, Bateman demonstrates the same knack for timing and fine shadings of attitude as he does onscreen.
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80

Variety

By Justin Chang
This exuberantly foul-mouthed and mean-spirited comedy goes somewhat soft in the final stretch but remains an often uproarious model of...
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75

Movie Nation

By Roger Moore
The film is full of sharp observations about academic contests today, with Tiger Moms and tough-love Dads browbeating the kids from the...
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75

St. Louis Post-Dispatch

By Joe Williams
Bad Words is often very funny, thanks to Bateman’s brick-wall malevolence and screenwriter Andrew Dodge’s inventively rude dialogue.
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75

New York Observer

By Rex Reed
Although the going is so sluggish at times that the film often looks like it needs artificial respiration, stick it out. The end result is...
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38

USA Today

By Claudia Puig
It's tough to summon sufficiently negative language to describe the unfunny, desperate mess that is Bad Words.
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30

Village Voice

By Stephanie Zacharek
Bateman, as both director and star, digs his heels in too hard to make the movie's points, using lots of ho-hum close-ups and wriggly...
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More Info

Rated R | For Crude and Sexual Content, Brief Nudity and Language
What Parents Need to Know
Common Sense Media says Pause for kids 16 & under Comedy best for older teens gets laughs with offbeat humor.
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POSITIVE MESSAGES
POSITIVE ROLE MODELS
VIOLENCE & SCARINESS
LANGUAGE
CONSUMERISM
DRINKING & DRUGS
SEXY STUFF