The History Boys

Review: The History Boys

By Kat2
13 May 07

Just one BORING thing after another....

I found this movie a challenge...it was a challenge to continue sitting there and keep watching it! Being a Mothers Day event I felt that it was only courteous to do so...but , oh, what a disappointment this film was.
The plot, dialogue and screenplay was swimming laboriously, in its own meaningless, lumpy cerebral stodge. One-dimensional, cardboard cut-out characters that did nothing but reinforce negative stereotypes. What a sorry and sad lot teachers apparently are, especially male ones with covert and inappropriate desires that (would that they could) unleash and reveal their true predatory nature! It was disturbing to have this cliched representation of a man's vocation that was not about a love of learning or academic rivalry even. Not one, but two homosexual teachers whose main agenda was having a "crush" on the main leader of the apparent learned group of students. Where was the passion for education of these young minds that (script willingly) seemed quite learned enough?
It was surprising to see the students as willing pillion passengers on the morbidly obese and repellent Hectors bike so he could have an inimate moment with their genitals, to moments in the classroom (and outside it) with these teachers, where not only smoking was permitted at a "theatrical" role-play level, but also the removal of Dakin's trousers...to the delight no doubt of the lecherous Hector and also the other student in the group that harboured feelings for this popular boy. Added to this disappointment is that all the "new strategies" that Irwin could impart to these boys was anarchic thinking re the history books, while he too, surprise, surprise, has secret lusting for Dakin. Dakin at any rate had a moment of anarchy with his own sexuality offering himself to his teacher although he wasn't "that way inclined"! Enough already, Bennett! There certainly was no chemistry between these two characters that preceded this redundant ploy.
The only enlivening moment to pick up the tardy pace was the occasional excerpt on the film's soundtrack of 80s music which I found to be the best part of the film, cajoling me into wakefulness.
No hidden depths here. Just an self-indulgent script that Bennett should have left on the stage, or preferably in his own head, for good.