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Genres: Drama , Thriller
Actors: Andrew Simpson , Syreeta Kumar , Emma Kennedy , Shaun Parkes , Joanna Scanlan , Michael Maloney , Tom Georgeson , Cate Blanchett , Judi Dench , Philip Davis , Wendy Nottingham , Tameka Empson , Leon Skinner , Bill Nighy , Juno Temple
Director: Richard Eyre
Country: United Kingdom
Year: 2006
IMDB Rating: 7.5/10 (45139 votes)

The bitter, cynical and lonely Barbara Covett is a tough and conservative teacher near to retirement that is loathed by her colleagues and students. In the loneliness of her apartment, she spends her spare time writing her journal, taking care of her old cat Portia and missing her special friend Jennifer Dodd. When Sheba Hart joins the high-school as the new art teacher, Barbara dedicates her attention to the newcomer, writing sharp and unpleasant comments about her behavior and clothes. When Barbara helps Sheba in a difficult situation with two students, the grateful Sheba invites her to have lunch with her family. Sheba introduces her husband and former professor Richard Hart, who is about twenty years older than she; her rebellious teenager daughter Polly; and her son Ben that has Down’s Syndrome. Barbara becomes close to Sheba, but when she accidentally discovers that Sheba is having an affair with the fifteen year-old student Steven Connolly, Barbara sees the chance to manipulate and get closer to Sheba, hiding the secret from the school headmaster. When Portia dies and Sheba does not stay with Barbara in the veterinary office to see Ben in a theater play, Barbara plots a Machiavellian revenge against Sheba, creating a scandal and consequent turmoil in their lives.

Film Review

"Notes on a Scandal" is a nightmarish film with a deft screenplay and powerful performances by Judi Dench and Cate Blanchett. The best thing about the film is the unreliable narrator. Judi Dench is a reason to watch the film once again, to reanalyze her motives and her biased voice-overs. That's it; nothing more about the film will be revealed further.Judi Dench is wonderful, outstanding in the titular role. She has a commanding personality, dumbfounds, looks down upon people around her and draws as much hatred. The way she looks at the children get up as soon as the bell rings gives a complete, thorough glimpse of her exemplary performance in the film. She is given the most witty, refined dialogs and she pronounces them with utmost conviction. She is given a task that is difficult to accomplish – to misguide the audience – and she carries to off brilliantly. It is difficult to write of her performance in the film, which in one word is preeminent.Cate Blanchet…

I had heard about and seen a trailer for this cool sounding drama, and I also heard about the leading actress being nominated the Academy Award, so I had to see if the hype I got would live up to the film itself, from director Richard Eyre (Iris). Basically Barbara Covett (Oscar, BAFTA and Golden Globe nominated Dame Judi Dench) is a bitter, cynical and lonely history teacher loathed by fellow staff members and students in a London high school nearing retirement. In her spare time she writes a diary every day and taking care of her cat Portia, and then she meets the new art teacher Sheba Hart (Oscar and Golden Globe nominated Cate Blanchett), and she dedicates all the time she can to spending time with her. After helping her deal with two students, Sheba and Barbara are pretty much best friends, and she gets to meet Sheba's family, twenty years older husband Richard Hart (Bill Nighy), teenage daughter Polly (Juno Temple) and Downs Syndrome suffering son Ben (Max Lewis). Barbara f…

There is something decidedly dark and disturbing about director Richard Eyre's "Notes on a Scandal." The story of a school teacher who blackmails her co-worker who is having an affair can be seen in many different ways, but the most distinctive purpose of this adaptation is a remedy for loneliness.The dark elements of the film come not from the suspenseful story itself, but rather from an underlying feeling of fear that the viewer has when watching Barbara Covett (Judi Dench) desperately tries to build an entire life around her school's latest faculty addition, Sheba Hart (Cate Blanchett). The audience realizes that Barbara, at times, carries her desires to a new intensity but can not help but sympathize with her depressing situation.Barbara is a veteran teacher who witnesses fellow teacher Sheba have an affair with one of her students. Instead of turning in Sheba to the school board and authorities, Barbara keeps the event a secret in exchange for Sheba's fri…