We know Hugh Jackman is more than just Wolverine. One of the most difficult roles of his career, in my opinion, came in HBO’s movie Bad Education.
Based on a New York magazine article titled “The Bad Superintendent,” the film details the (real-world) crimes of a celebrated school superintendent Dr Frank A Tassone (Hugh Jackman) and assistant superintendent Pamela Gluckin (Allison Janney).
After it comes to light that Gluckin has used tax payer’s money for her personal needs, the scandal threatens to destroy the reputation of the entire school district.
Frank, who has some dirty secrets of his own, gives an impression of sense and calm to persuade his superiors to bury the accusation. He argues that the school district is on the verge of becoming the topmost in the entire country, and this scandal, should it ever come to light, would ensure that never happens.
Frank is a calm, composed character who is something of a showman with a love of luxury and everything expensive. He is also not a bad man, per se, just corrupt. After his crimes come to light and everything begins to fall apart in his life, the breakdown is hilarious and perversely entertaining to watch. Both Janney and Jackman deliver top-notch performances and personally, I enjoyed Jackman’s work more in Bad Education than even Logan, easily his best performance as Wolverine.
When it comes to a genre like superhero movies, special effects, CGI and stunt work tend to overshadow acting. Also, audiences for these movies want fast-paced entertainment. That is not the case with Bad Education. The sedate pace allows Jackman to inhabit the role in a more comprehensive way, and he does it like a master of his craft.
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