MARCH 9, 2018 -- Stanley Tucci is one of those everyman kind of actors that can effortlessly disappear into a role. He played the obsessive pedophile in "The Lovely Bones" (2009) and Julia Child's doting husband in "Julie & Julia" to the ostentasious Caesar Flickerman in "The Hunger Games"; he rarely disappoints.


His talent alone is almost enough to save Richard Levine's latest feature film about a very topical subject matter - sexual harassment at the workplace. With everything going on with Me Too and the recent Hollywood and university revelations, "Submission" should be a must see film.


The story places Tucci as professor Ted Swenson at a university in Anytown USA. He is married to his still good-looking wife Sherrie (Kyra Sedgwick) and a once-upon-a-time successful author. But he lost his writing mojo long ago and is plodding along as a writing prof of a bunch of students who could really care less.

One of the students, Angela (Addison Timlin) shows some promise however when she offers pages from a manuscript she is preparing titled 'Eggs'. She pulls him in by caressing his ego with "You're my favorite writer" and "I think your book was a masterpiece" lines that work. This despite a recent party with colleagues who cringe at the idea of being alone with a student.


Ted dismisses the warnings and starts meeting with Angela alone even after reading some of her disturbed writings of sexual adventures conveniently located at the school library. Moreover, regardless of recent school meetings about sexual harassment, Ted finds himself in Angela's dorm room...alone.


You don't have to be a rocket scientist to figure out what happens next as well as the rest of the story. Even if you hadn't seen it before in "Notes on a Scandal", "Election", "A Teacher", "The Squid and the Whale", or even "Back to School"... you know the rest of the story.


What is disappointing is Levine has a chance to present an opposing view to demonstrate it takes two to tango; that would have been a bolder more creative take on the subject matter rather than following status quo.


Tucci is perfect as the targeted professor and the rest of the cast is sufficient though Timlin could have added a bit more sexiness to her character (despite her nude scene).


"Submission" winds up being just another professor-student affair movie that covers no new ground and offers no new solutions. It stands as merely a well-acted warning to teachers everywhere.   -- GRADE C --   GEOFF BURTON