Putting Education Reform To The Test

“Won’t Back Down” Is Not Winning Over Movie Critics

Courtesy Walden Media

Viola Davis stars as a teacher in "Won't Back Down," which opens Friday.

The big education movie “Won’t Back Down” is opening this week.

The movie tells the fictional tale of a Pittsburgh parent and school teacher fighting to turn around their failing school.

The movie is based on parent trigger legislation being considered around the country, including Florida. Supporters hope that “Won’t Back Down” can focus a spotlight on the issue, just as “Waiting For Superman” did on charter schools.

Both movies were produced by the same company, Walden Media.

There’s just one problem: Critics hate the movie.

The movie has a 32 percent rating — a “rotten” score — at critic aggregation site RottenTomatoes.com as of Thursday morning. That means just one of every three critics gave the movie a favorable review.

“The film regularly devolves into a dry cinematic op-ed with thinly developed characters making didactic speeches articulating the issues involved in the knotty, emotionally charged subject of school choice,” A.V. club critic Nathan Rabin wrote.

The movie has held screenings at the Republican National Convention in Tampa at events across Florida.

Have you seen “Won’t Back Down” yet? What did you think of the movie? How effective is its message?

Here’s the trailer:


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