Directed By Kevin Williamson
By: Eric Greenwood
Kevin Williamson has ridden his Scream wave as far as it’ll go because after audiences get a load of Teaching Mrs. Tingle they’ll definitely be wary of another film “by the creator of Scream.” Teaching Mrs. Tingle is pretty atrocious despite the quality casting. It’s the lackluster script that fails to generate any kind of spark or tension whatsoever. Helen Mirren is clearly slumming it here for a quick cash cow as Mrs. Tingle, although last weekend’s box office tally seems to reflect an ironic twist of fate.
Katie Holmes is always going to be charming onscreen. Her perpetually seventeen year old looking face and body won’t hurt her casting momentum either, but a few more flops like this and someone in Hollywood will certainly start to think twice before giving her top billing again. Newcomer Marisa Coughlan, the latest Williamson protege, shows promise, especially in her re-enactment of the famous masturbation scene from The Exorcist.
I can deal with a far-fetched plot if there’s a pay-off like lots of gratuitous violence or unnecessary skin shots, but Teaching Mrs. Tingle is nothing but a tease. Apparently, this is the first script that Williamson ever wrote, and it shows. The dialogue is stilted and the character development is non-existent, which is pretty much par for the course in a teen flick, but, my god, this movie has nothing going for it other than a few pretty faces.
The most offensive aspect of this corporate vehicle is the awful soundtrack. I guess it was sponsored by some label that wants to showcase its new roster of mindlessly lame rock, but it really felt like songs were stuck in purely at random. Man, they were bad too. The music on Dawson’s Creek is bad enough, but this was even worse. Williamson must be making some serious change to turn a blind eye to the soundtrack. Even teens have ears.