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Bad Spelling (2004)

Les fautes d'orthographe (original title)
Being a student in a school where the headmaster is your father and the head supervisor your mother is no bed of roses. That's what Daniel Massu tells himself every day of his life. The ... See full summary »
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Damien Jouillerot ...
Daniel Massu - le fils du directeur et de la directrice des études
Geneviève Massu - la directrice des études
Pierre Massu - le directeur du collège
Raphaël Goldman ...
Richard Zygelman - l'ami de Daniel
Franc Bruneau ...
Jean-Claude Griset - l'élève anarchiste
Anthony Decadi ...
René Boury - le traître
Khalid Maadour ...
Marcel Marazelle
Arnaud Giovaninetti ...
Gianni Salvadori, le surveillant d'internat
Mercedes Suza-Lobo - la belle élève
Noémie Develay ...
Isabelle Cizar - l'élève indisciplinée
Stéphane Höhn ...
M. Monteil
Jean Lescot ...
M. Lévi, le prof de français
Bernard Charnacé ...
M. Brian - le prof d'anglais
Sylvie Huguel ...
Mme Beyer - la prof d'histoire
Victor Carril ...
Le premier jumeau Deloge


Being a student in a school where the headmaster is your father and the head supervisor your mother is no bed of roses. That's what Daniel Massu tells himself every day of his life. The others believe he is his father's pet whereas the latter wants his son to sleep in the dormitory with the others, which he hates! And although Daniel claims he has swept the sexy Mercédès off her feet he is no ladies' man! To say nothing of his bad spelling, which regularly earns him appallingly low grades. But Damien, who has drive, does not let all those problems get him down. Written by Guy Bellinger

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Release Date:

3 November 2004 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Bad Spelling  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


The director shot the film in the middle school where he was a pupil himself. See more »


Le drapeau noir flotte sur la marmite
Written by Georges Brassens
from the films of the same name by Michel Audiard
See more »

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User Reviews

Zero de Conduite
25 August 2007 | by See all my reviews

Bearing more than a distant resemblance to Jean Vigo's famous work's spirit,"les fautes d'Orthographe" is ,as far as directing is concerned ,MTV quality.The supervisor's long hair is an unlikelihood: at the time,all the supervisors were wearing a suit and a tie,French's honor!I know what I'm talking about.And as for the rebellious mind,it could happen,yes ,but before 1968,it was almost implausible.

But given it is a true story ,we've got to take that for granted,at least in the lousy boarding school the hero's parents are running.Olivier Gourmet is good,but Carole Bouquet ,cast against type,wearing glasses,is amazing as a mother hen .

The young hero is a hung-up kid,afraid of having a shower with his mates ,and hated by a lot of them because he is the headmaster's sonny.As he is not very cute ,not very strong and not very good at spelling ,the only way for him to avoid becoming a punching bag is to prove himself smarter than the pack.The "school fund" which he creates and which sells stolen products will be his lucky break:as food at school is not exactly mouth-watering,selling "La Vache qui Rit" (cheese spread)or "Chocorêves" (literally "Chocolate Dreams"),chocolates French pupils were fond of which are no longer produced gives the ugly duckling the prestige he was longing for.

The film includes two versions of "Donna Donna Donna" ,the first one in Yiddish (the hero's parents and his best friend are Jews)and the second one in French.The French words to this old folk song are different from the English one Joan Baez (notably) used to sing in the early sixties.The song talks about a boy who dreams of being a man ;when he grows up,he will regret the time when he was a child.That was perhaps what the director/writer wanted to tell us in the end.

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