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film reel image

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Secret Life of A Student 2021 * * 1/2 Stars


"I'm your teacher. There is nothing more between us". There is "more" I need to say about the flick I'm about to review. How about another 200+ words. 

Anyway, Secret Life of A Student is my latest write-up. And its title, well it doesn't have much to do with the movie. "Secret Life" is about a female high school teacher who is getting it from all angles. Someone in a sleek car is trying to harass her, her student claims he had an affair with her therefore threatening her job, and social media deviants are posting stuff about her that is well, inappropriate. The high school teacher I'm talking about is Lauren Beeches and she is played by Canadian actress Rhonda Dent. Dent gives a solid performance in the lead role. There's a certain rawness and vulnerability to it. 

Secret Life of A Student is directed by sometimes producer Jason James. James fashions "Secret Life" as a slow burn where you anxiously wait for the big reveal. So OK, who is driving by Lauren's house and giving her the creeps? Why doesn't the dean of students believe that Lauren is an upstanding teacher who doesn't rob the cradle in her spare time? And who killed Lauren's bestie at the beginning act leaving Lauren to care for said bestie's young daughter? These questions get answered at the two-hour mark (with commercials added). "Secret Life", well it has the ability to leave the viewer tedium-bound and enthralled all at the same time.

Basically "Secret Life" is a Lifetime endeavor posing as veritable whodunit. The acting is sometimes hammy, the whiff of the film is sometimes campy, the red herrings are ready-made, and there's the final twist where the antagonist goes completely cray cray (the way she says "sweet baby angel" is borderline theatrical). I've seen better Lifetime-rs but I've also seen worse. A secret "life" less ordinary.

Written by Jesse Burleson

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