Stealing School (VOD) – Movie Review
Follow Genre: Drama
Director: Li Dong
Distributor: Vertical Entertainment
Duration: 74 minutes

Stealing School (VOD) – Movie Review

Site Score
7.0
Good: Nice plot pointing to your own human errors
Bad: The acting is sometimes a bit poor
User Score
9.0
(2 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 9.0/10 (2 votes cast)

There’s a point in everybody’s life where they are made clear how important it is to write text in your own words and to use quotation marks whenever you use an excerpt from somebody’s work. These are classic ways of making sure your own integrity is respected, as well as other people’s work. Perhaps the world doesn’t exactly run on classic rules anymore though. That’s basically what Stealing School is about.

Stealing School follows April Chen (Celine Tsai), a Chinese-Canadian top student in the tech/coding field. April is under heavy fire just a week before her graduation, as she is accused of plagiarism by a stuck-up self-absorbed teacher (Jonathan Keltz). This isn’t the first time it happened as well, but the previous two times seemed somewhat dismissable. In the entire movie, we get to see a hearing on university grounds, with some flashbacks thrown in-between. It’s a movie about power, prejudice, and eventually, the question of which type of person runs society itself. That the entire movie shows a single hearing is, in this case, a good thing. Thanks to the attention Stealing School gives to each character involved, the storyline does not get boring, yet gives you a certain sense of tension. This tension also brings the theme of prejudice to the audience’s side, making you judge characters more than once.

The plot is well-written that way, and for once it’s difficult to decide who has what agenda and who wants to confront each other. Because every few minutes new information is introduced, this keeps the flow of the plot fresh as well. It simply doesn’t get boring because of this continuous flow of information and the point-of-view switching to multiple people’s wishes, past, and mistakes. It also helps that the movie is only about an hour and fourteen minutes long, so you don’t need a long attention span to get through it. In a way, it’s like the perfect film festival submission; short enough to keep you entertained, long enough to put everything in it to tell a proper story.

Acting-wise, the movie does pretty well too. We’d say about ninety percent of the acting is believable, though the other ten percent is just rather easy to poke through. Every now and then, some acting is just so over-the-top in line with the stereotyping connected to each character, that you can’t help but notice it. Especially the teacher dragging April to court (Jonathan Keltz) tends to jump out of proportion every now and then.

Any possible extras can not be discussed as we viewed the VOD version of this movie. It is a movie that lends itself perfectly for possible interviews though, as questions about race and human behavior pop up constantly. These are questions everybody has an opinion about, so it would actually be nice to hear some actors about the roles they play at the very least.

Conclusion

The movie might not be a cinematic masterpiece, but the shots and sound effects are enough to keep the tension going, as well as that it uses some subtle clichés to lure you in. These clichés are handled in a smart way and thanks to the great underlying written plot, it can sometimes make up for the somewhat inexperienced acting performances. It’s simply an original and amusing movie.

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Rating: 9.0/10 (2 votes cast)
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Stealing School (VOD) - Movie Review, 9.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings
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Find me on youtube to see some playthroughs! https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuBrlulGywcb0EiYWBnA1ng

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