Film / Mr Woodcock

Mr Woodcock is a 2007 comedy film starring Seann William Scott, Susan Sarandon, and Billy Bob Thornton.

Tropes include:

  • Butt Monkey: John, as ever.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Woodcock.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: Woodcock, again.
  • I Banged Your Mom: Certainly implied, since Woodcock is dating John's mom after all.
    • John ends up in an unfortunate spot when he breaks into Woodcock's house, just as his mother and Woodcock come home to have sex, while John is trapped under the bed.
  • Jerkass: Woodcock, although by the end he is shown to be a Jerk with a Heart of Gold.
    • John's agent (played by Amy Poehler) is this to insane levels, although she gets a sort-of comeuppance when a rant against John is seen by Tyra Banks and hundreds of viewers on live TV.
    • John, although his intentions are good-hearted, gets a few crosses-the-line moments throughout the film, especially near the end.
  • Mama Bear: Beverly when Woodcock challenges John to a fight near the end.
  • The Millstone: Nedderman.
  • Not So Different: In spite of his reasons, John does some pretty selfish things throughout the film, to the point where he's almost as bad as Woodcock.
    • Heel Realization: John actually does realize that the things he's doing to Woodcock are wrong, and revenge won't resolve anything. Woodcock, on the other hand, never does own up to the abuse he put John through as a child, even outright telling him "It was just gym class!"
  • Parent with New Paramour
  • Sadist Teacher: Woodcock is the gym teacher from hell. Nedderman even implies that he killed an asthmatic boy by working him too hard. This turns out to not be true, however.
  • Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist: You have to feel sorry for John after the years of abuse he endured from Woodcock, but sneaking into Woodcock's house, nearly ruining his mother's chance at happiness, embarrassing Woodcock at a public awards ceremony, and challenging him to a fight (then seriously injuring him) is crossing the line.
    • Roger Ebert pointed out in his review that John's self-help book can't possibly be any different than any other self-help book, and that John is a bit of a charlatan, making money off other people's weaknesses and fears. He also felt that the film implies that John hasn't kept in touch with his mother much since becoming a popular author, and the only reason he's visiting her, is because his book tour happens to be stopping through his hometown.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: John views Woodcock as this, especially when he wins an Educator of the Year award.
    • He later realizes that Woodcock might just deserve it. As it was John's drive to prove that Woodcock was wrong about him that drove him to become a best selling author.