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Middle School The Worst Years of My Life Blu-ray Review

Reviewed by on Jan 03, 2017
Rating: 3 Star Rating

Should you add Middle School The Worst Years of My Life Blu-ray/DVD to your collection? Are the extras a fun watch? Check out Kidzworld’s Blu-ray review.

By: Lynn Barker

In Middle School The Worst Years of My Life based on the book series by James Patterson, Rafe Khatchadorian (Griffin Gluck) has had a loss in his family and relies on his cartoon artwork as a stress release. When a mean new principal takes over his new school and enforces strict rules, he also destroys Rafe’s precious sketchbook. This calls for major retaliation!

Rafe with little sis and the family dogRafe with little sis and the family dogCourtesy of Lionsgate Home Entertainment

New School

Rafe Khatchadorian is a middle school kid who has been kicked out of several schools due to a wild imagination and artistic efforts. His mom Jules (Lauren Graham) is worried and horrible Carl (Rob Riggle) nicknamed “Bear” whom she is about to marry, can’t wait for Rafe to screw up again so he can send him off to military school. On Rafe’s first day he is the target of strict Principal Dwight (Andy Daly) who says there is a rule book at this school and Rafe better follow it!

Mom (Lauren Graham) sees Rafe off to first day of new schoolMom (Lauren Graham) sees Rafe off to first day of new schoolCourtesy of Lionsgate Home Entertainment

Breaking the Rules

Dwight is excited about a big statewide test and wants his school to have high marks so he can get a bonus.  He hates creativity and when Rafe’s sketchbook, which contains an unflattering cartoon about him, falls into his hands, he destroys it along with Rafe’s spirit. Rafe and best friend Leo (Thomas Barbusca) decide to pull pranks that will break every one of the rules in Dwight’s book!

Rafe in school with his tormentor MillerRafe in school with his tormentor MillerCourtesy of Lionsgate Home Entertainment

New Challenges

In Rafe’s corner is attractive activist and smart student Jeannie (Isabela Moner) who is the AV girl running the school “station”. Rafe’s nemesis in class is Miller (Jacob Hopkins) who makes fun of his last name every chance he gets.  On Rafe’s side is cool teacher Mr. Teller (Adam Palley) who encourages imagination.

Rafe and pal Gus are scolded by Vice Principal StrickerRafe and pal Gus are scolded by Vice Principal StrickerCourtesy of Lionsgate Home Entertainment

Pranks and Principal’s Plot

Rafe and pal’s rule-breaking plots include wallpapering the entire school interior with Post-It notes, dumping dye in the fire water system etc. At home, “Bear” makes life more and more miserable for Rafe and cool younger sis Georgia (Alexa Nisenson). When Jeannie videos Dwight pulling something illegal and mean that will exclude Rafe’s entire class from taking the state test, she joins Rafe and, eventually, the whole class in a final effort to get Dwight fired. Will things backfire on our hero? Will he end up in military school while mom marries her evil boyfriend?

Principal Dwight discovers the Post-It prankPrincipal Dwight discovers the Post-It prankCourtesy of Lionsgate Home Entertainment

Special Extra Features

  • The Middle School Life – is a behind-the-scenes look at fun on set. The story is told by actors and filmmakers and each actor talks about his or her character but don’t watch until you have seen the film since there are a few spoilers. Production design of the school to incorporate some of Rafe’s art and his sketchbook is discussed. Fun.
  • Middle School = The Worst, Making Movies = The Best presents more on set silliness while actors bond and laugh. Goofy but cute.
  • The Wedgie Wheel is pretty silly/fun. Various actors invent their own version of the classic underwear-pulling prank. Pretty creative.
  • XOLO: Behind Operation Rafe is a featurette breaking down the various plans Rafe and friends come up with to break the Principal’s oppressive rules. We examine each prank and see how it was done. Cool.
  • Gag Reel – yep, I love ‘um. This one is tame but includes the usual line goofs, silly ad-libs, stuff breaking, giggles, burping, a cameraman falling down etc. Always fun.
  • Deleted Scenes – a few, nothing amazing but some cute new animation we didn’t see.

Wrapping Up

Middle School The Worst Years of My Life is a fun watch and certainly relatable to some tweens or younger teens. I love that the story celebrates imagination, the Arts and individuality but there is maybe a bit too much plot as the tale skips from the idea of Rafe busting all of the Principal’s rules to trouble on the homefront. There is a nice twist that you might not see coming if you haven’t read the book.

Griffin Gluck as RafeGriffin Gluck as RafeCourtesy of Lionsgate Home Entertainment

The animation sequences are fun and well-drawn and actors do a decent job. The film looks and sounds crisp on this Blu-ray/DVD set and Extras are fun if not amazing. Like we did for the film in theaters, we can go 3 stars.

Middle School The Worst Years of My Life Blu-ray Rating:3

Middle School The Worst Years of My Life Blu-rayMiddle School The Worst Years of My Life Blu-rayCourtesy of Lionsgate Home Entertainment

Middle School The Worst Years of My Life is now out on Blu-ray/DVD!



Have Your Say

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