Notes On A Scandal

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Director: Richard Eyre
Starring: Judi Dench, Cate Blanchett, Bill Nighy, Andrew Simpson
RunTime: 93 mins
Genre: Drama
Rating: M18 (Sexual Scenes)

As an educator, I get asked very often candidly by my friends if any form of relationships would form between students and teachers. I mean... NO! I keep my distance. They are so young. Just not right at all! Teachers used to be placed a far distance from students and viewed with a sense of authority. However, we grow up at an age now where I hear of lecturers marrying their students after they graduate.

Notes on a scandal: An arts teacher Sheba (Cat Blanchett) making out with a boy less than half her age. Nobody can ever understand fully why. The movie doesn't explain explicitly why. But as Bill Nighy characters say that we all crave for somebody younger at one point in time, it left me thinking for a long time.

Would being with somebody young remind us of the youth we lost, or desire that vulnerability of youth. Perhaps it was the intensity with innocence that older women yearn, but never got from their lovers. I won't know now.

One Woman's Mistake Is Another's Opportunity: On another hand, a veteran history teacher Barbara (Judi Dench) knows this secret of the guilty teacher, and uses this knowledge to form a 'friendship' underlining with sexual interest. Is she just lonely? Is she a lesbian? Most would say she is, but I may beg to differ. All she craved was a touch which would send her shivers, and she never ever had any true relationships with anybody. A loner and a lesbian is quite different, and you start to feel that the power of loneliness is undesirably and undeniably strong.

Any ordinary person would not fully condone or comprehend these two women. As for the emotional turmoil and tension, I could only commiserate but not understand fully. Yet it is strange that most people I know can acknowledge the conflicts in the movie. (Would it be the same if it was a male teacher and female student? Or two male teachers?)

The movie could be seen as an entertaining psychological thriller with clever lines and brilliant soundtrack. Or a showcase of exceptional acting by my two favourite actresses who made acting looked so easy. Notes on a Scandal's ominous undertones on loneliness left me rather disturbed.

Notes On A Scandal - You will never look at school teachers the same way again

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