Excellent and certainly provocative... If nothing else, the film is a real conversation starter.
Strong acting helps the film overcome an uncertain premise and create characters that hold our attention absolutely.
The acting in this movie is really good.
Each character in this movie — down to the smallest one — is an individual rather than a type, prone to spontaneous changes of mood and sometimes amusing outbursts of pettiness or ill humor.
Friendless, bitter history teacher at a bustling British high school is at first appalled by--and then strangely drawn to--a new arrival: the lovely, earthy young art teacher who wants everyone to fall in love with her. The flirtatious nature of this ethereal newcomer draws a strapping 15-year-old student into the picture, a sticky situation of which the spinster becomes well aware, eventually using the turn of events to her advantage. For the better part of an hour, director Richard Eyre hypnotically weaves an intriguing web of mismatched lives intersecting within secret complicity and, ultimately, tragedy. Working from Zoe Heller's novel "What Was She Thinking: Notes on a Scandal", screenwriter Patrick Marber creates an absorbing whirlpool of emotional characters and private feelings, while Judi Dench's elderly Barbara alternately seethes and smiles like a Cheshire cat. Both Dench and Cate Blanchett are amazing, however Eyre allows a few of the supporting players too much slack, and the melodrama which takes over in the final third becomes overwrought as a result. Still quite good, with a dangerously dreamy ambiance sweeping its dueling divas up in a cloud of conflict and little gold stars. *** from ****
Notes on a Scandal (2006) really is an amazing movie, it's wonderfully acted, skillfully written, and directed beautifully. Cate Blanchett and Judi Dench are incredible actresses and this film proves it 100%! They both turn on marvelous performances and interact very well together on screen. The screenplay is very well put together, which is why the movie garnered such good reviews and so many award nominations and wins. The plot is intriguing and the characters are so deep and interesting that there's no possible way any viewer could become bored during the movie, it really keeps your attention. Barbara (Judi Dench) is a very complex and deluded individual in this film and that combined with Sheba (Cate Blanchett) and her issues makes for some pretty intense scenes. 10/10 for notes on a scandal! Highly suggested masterful film!
Notes on a Scandal is a film on what I would like to call the modern day "Fatal Attraction." Both movies relate to themes regarding sex and romance with dire consequences, although the effects are not as large in this film. This is a thinking thriller and each character in the film is multi-layered. In other words, the story at the beginning is not the story at the end, as the plot is always twisting and turning in a new direction. This is a fine thriller with dark themes and to be quite frank, a nail-biting one.Richard Eyre's film is about a cynical history teacher named Barbara Covett who lives in a lonely world. A new art teacher named Sheba Hart is hired and Barbara decides to take her under her wings. But when Barbara discovers a scandalous affair involving one of the students, Barbara uses this opportunity to reach new heights.The acting is phenomenal. Judi Dench seems to do well in the roles as the ladies you don't want to cross. She as Barbara was excellent, even if her character is mirthless. Cate Blanchett as Sheba is likewise fantastic as the much younger Sheba. Although she did something immoral, you still feel sympathy for her. Bill Nighy has a couple great scenes as Sheba's husband. However, the kid who played Sheba's lover was quite annoying.Overall, Notes on a Scandal is a excellent, passionate thriller about obsessions and control. It is about how one incident can lead to a plethora of incidents and some beyond control. It is interesting to see where such dark passion can lead you. This is a top-notch, nail-biting thriller that has two perfect performances from Dench and Blanchett. There haven't been many quality romance thrillers these days, but this is one to watch. I rate this film 9/10.
When you watch good movies you hardly notice the passage of time. On the other hand bad movies are usually unpleasant experiences that seem to last forever. This movie falls into that bad category like a hand in a glove. Its running time is only 92 minutes but it will feel like you are watching a movie 3+ times longer. The only thing that kept me watching it was looking at my watch every 5 minutes wishing that I would soon see the final credits. At last I finally did but was disappointed about wasting 1.5 hours that could have been used for more entertaining things.Most reviewers of this film praise the excellent acting and screenplay but I don't know why. There are many breakdowns in this movie. I like Judi Dench but she is too old for her character. Her time has come and gone for roles like this. Despite this, Academy Award voters as recent as 2014 continue voting for her performances anyway. This is obviously the result of most of these voters being too old themselves so they don't know the difference.Cate Blanchett's overacting can't save a pitiful plot that movie goers have seen over and over again. In fact nothing can save this movie. I suggest saving yourself from the pain of wasting 90 minutes.