The English Teacher

The English Teacher

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Some women lead dramatic lives. They have high-powered jobs, live in big cities, and search for Mr. Right, only to find their soul mates at their best friends’ weddings.Not Linda Sinclair.Linda Sinclair (Julianne Moore) is a forty-year-old unmarried high school English teacher in the small town of Kingston, Pennsylvania. She shares a small apartment with two Siamese cats. No relationships. No children. Her life is uncomplicated, and she likes it that way.Though her day-to-day existence may seem dull, Linda is wildly passionate about her job: teaching the great works of literature to impressionable young minds. She’s Kingston’s answer to the Dead Poets Society, inspiring teenagers to love Shakespeare and “The Catcher in the Rye,” and helping them to discover their own creative voices.But Linda’s simple life is upended when former star pupil Jason Sherwood (Michael Angarano) returns to Kingston a miserable failure after trying to make it as a playwright in New York. Linda was the one who’d encouraged Jason to follow his muse, sending him off to study theater at NYU. Now in his 20’s, Jason is on the verge of abandoning art, pressured by his overbearing father, Dr. Tom Sherwood (Greg Kinnear), to face reality and go to law school.Linda can’t stand the thought of Jason giving up on his dreams. Not when she can help. So she decides to mount his play – a dark, angst-ridden, ambitious work – as a Kingston High production, with flamboyant drama teacher Carl Kapinas (Nathan Lane) directing.The production is star-crossed from Day One. Faced with awful teenage acting, soaring costs, clashes between Kapinas and Jason, and pressure from a prudish school principal to tone down the play’s edgier elements, it’ll be a miracle if the show goes on.One man who would love to see the play fail is Jason’s father, Tom (Greg Kinnear). An uptight conservative, Tom is the real-life model for the play’s fictional villain.In the end, it’s Linda’s own passion that undoes the play. Weeks of working side by side with Jason, as mentor and protégé, arouse feelings even Linda can’t repress. When Linda finally surrenders to her lust, it sets the stage for her comic downfall. She’s propelled by her own self-destructive guilt and bitter jealousy over a rival for Jason’s affections (the play’s pretty teen ingénue) into a shocking public scandal.Drama is no longer confined to the safe pages of Linda’s books.With the play, her reputation, and her teaching career on the line, Linda finds an unlikely ally in herself.
Starring Julianne Moore, Greg Kinnear, Michael Angarano 
Director Craig Zisk