Who's in It:
Amy Sedaris, Stephen Colbert, Paul Dinello
The Basics: Jerri Blank (Sedaris) is a 47-year-old high-school freshman recently sprung from prison after a life of drug addiction and prostitution. It's based on the cult TV series that appealed to weirdos like me. And I wish this movie were as good. But it's just not, dragging in its last 40 padded minutes toward a limp ending.
What's the Deal? Sedaris is pretty much the coolest woman alive. I'm a huge fan. I watched freakin' Maid in Manhattan because she was in it for about five total minutes. And I felt justified in that. And she doesn't disappoint here. Neither does Colbert as a science teacher who uses the Bible as a textbook. They're both hilarious. But the joke here is TV-sized, not movie-sized. I'd trade this feature for an extra season or two of the show in a heartbeat.
Cameos Out the You Know What: Philip Seymour Hoffman and Alison Janney play uptight school-board members, Matthew Broderick plays a science teacher, Sarah Jessica Parker is a sexed-up counselor.
Hated the Show? Then stay far away from this. What's funny is very funny. And what's not is deadly. It's for forgiving fans only.
How Long, Oh Lord? 85 minutes. That means it got chopped and chopped. And it still feels too long.
She'll Never Go Hungry: Sedaris has a sideline cheese-ball and cupcake business. She just makes them in her kitchen and sells them. You can buy them in different places around New York. A friend shipped me one of her cheese-balls surrounded by dry ice last Christmas via overnight mail. It was delicious.