I will have to admit, I'm nothing but disappointed in this movie. It could have been the call for justice that it should have been, effectively creating some real change and showing the nitty gritty of this very real issue, much like Morgan Spurlock's "Super Size Me" did (since then he's been hit or miss, but that first movie was pretty fantastic at stopping the fast food industry dead in its tracks). That film effectively made fast food "uncool," and was partially responsible for the health craze we see now. "Bully" on the other hand is a movie that by existing, violates its own message. It documents the lives of various people who have been affected by bullying, all of whom are very poor and very rural (no city folk here), and literally watches them suffer. Especially when they decide to tail one of the kids, and film him being attacked on a school bus. The camera literally lingers as the kid is almost murdered on camera, being strangled by another kid. No one intervenes, ever. It lets the bullying happen just to prove its own misguided point.
That in itself is sickening. The filmmaker, called Lee Hirsch, should be ashamed of himself just for his own indifference to the suffering of these kids. He milks the issue for his own devices, and never ever bothers figuring out a solution. Sadly, this has worked, and this film will be nominated for an Oscar, most likely.
And eventually it even stops focusing on bullying itself. The rest of the film is devoted to pointless looks into the lives of the victims, watching the brother of a kid who killed himself walk aimlessly around for almost half an hour (yes, this happens) and a lesbian drone on for several minutes about how great her friends are, while they also walk aimlessly around. It actually brings more attention to the fact that this girl "made" another girl gay (or so the film seems to claim, I'm not making an opinion there) than about her bullying experiences.
Then it cuts right to that kid being tortured earlier being tortured again, on the same damn school bus. This time around, an obese kid's stabbing him with a pencil and bashing his head into the metal seat. Still the director (who also filmed) does nothing. He just watches.
The only good that comes out of this inaction is that the kids who pull all this crap, at least on that one kid, have their faces identified to the world. You can only hope that someone kicked the crap out of them in retaliation.
The even sadder part is that D-list celebrity after D-list celebrity have been pretending to support this film in a desperate attempt to make money of the appreciation of the audience. The biggest offender from my brief Google search was the one-hit wonder Sean Kingston, of the song "Beautiful Girls." Oh and a couple of the actors from the hit TV show "Glee," which is openly sexist, racist, anti-Semitic AND homophobic. Great people, all of them.
Just goes to show that not even an attempt to stop an important issue can be wholesome and pure anymore. This film is an example of the half-assed way we here deal with our problems: pretend that we care.
Maybe bullying will go away one day, but this movie didn't help.