“Bad Education” (HBO)

A friend and Roslyn, New York high school graduate recommended this fascinating film. It’s worth getting a trial run of HBO (if you don’t subscribe) just to see an incredible true story of two school administrators in Roslyn, New York who embezzled millions of dollars over a ten year period. Stellar cast with Hugh Jackman, Allison Janey, and Ray Romano. A quick Wikipedia search shows that some of the facts don’t exactly parallel the real people/events, but close enough. I don’t want to do any spoiler alerts but I do urge a quick Google search to see photos of the real culprits and their partners in crime. It’s not a series, so you get the whole story in one sitting. Added bonus: if you liked “If Knishes Could Talk” you will enjoy hearing all the New Yawk accents.

If you are into tales of major deceit and embezzlement by charming sociopaths, watch the 2017 Netflix documentary “All the Queen’s Horses”. In this case it is a much loved city official (and native) of a small town in Illinois who uses her position to bilk the town of $53 million dollars over twenty years. What strikes me about these cases (and I’m sure there are so many like them–wasn’t there a recent San Francisco city officials’ bust?) is that they are not complicated heists with a lot of expertise and planning. They seem to be crimes of convenience. And charisma. I remember one of my kids complained to me how another student was skimming money from the entry fee box for the school football games. He was a charming kid from an affluent family, high grades, ultimately Ivy League school. Maybe next year we’ll be reading about him.

I would love a discussion about the outcomes of the film, so if you have a chance, post some comments. Or, let me know and you can create your own post.

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