Not everyday do students try to take over a school, but in the movie Middle School: The Worst Years Of My Life, we see a compelling case for why students should have more of a say in their education. Rafe (a student played by Griffin Gluck) has transferred to a new school, Hills Village Middle School, after being kicked out of his previous one. He leads a rebellion that makes a big impact. Over the holiday break, I watched this movie with my daughter. We enjoyed the artistic graphic novel aspect, and we were happy to root for the underdog character.
Middle School: The Worst Years Of My Life Movie Review
At Hills Village, Rafe – with his love for art and disinterest in the rules – instantly clashes with his new principal, Mr. Ken Dwight (Andy Daly). Rafe sets out to break every single school rule. This happens at the worst possible time for Principal Dwight during the weeks leading up to standardized testing. Since testing is such a hot topic in schools today, I liked that the movie examined a current issue with a hip, modern style to appeal to different ages.
Heartfelt But Common Plot Falls Short Of Turning The Rules Upside Down
Many movies set in schools focus on giving an inspirational message in an expected way. From Freedom Writers to School of Rock the overarching message is often one of overcoming the odds. In these movies, students typically learn to make the most out of their situation in life, despite their shortcomings. While this movie is no different, it does make a genuine effort to use artistic visuals and plot twists that would appeal to a young audience of adolescents, with elements that can appeal to parents as well.
Artistic Visuals Appeal To An Audience Of Different Ages
Some visual highlights of the movie include the walls that Rafe covers in post-it note artwork and the hallways that he fills with a paint-infused dance party. I enjoyed seeing the artistic, over the top statements. My daughter loved the part when paint came through the sprinkler system at the school. Every student looked happy and free.
Discovering why Rafe is acting out was interesting. The previous year, Rafe lost his younger brother. Not only was the brother a companion, but also an uplifting child with a good sense of humor. Then, his mom started dating a new man. Unfortunately, his mom has no idea that the guy is terrible deep down and has his priorities completely set wrong.
Middle School: The Worst Years Of My Life was released on Blu Ray on January 3, 2017. It is a fun family drama with plenty of comedy that can bring joy to a cold, winter’s day.
While watching the movie, I wasn’t sure if it would be too mature for my six year old. I was happy to discover that not only did she enjoy watching the movie, but also that it was overall appropriate for her. Check out the trailer to get a glimpse of what you’re in for if you watch the movie.
What recent movie release have you enjoyed watching in your home this winter? As the snow flurries outside, I’m eager to discover great movies. Share your recommendations in the comments.