**1/2 (out of four)
Any "Arrested Development" fan knows how well Jason Bateman can do resentment. The harder Michael Bluth (Bateman) tries to pretend he doesn't care about his family, the stronger the pull to come back and show them what's what.
In "Bad Words," the actor's directorial debut, Guy (Bateman) has a similar chip on his shoulder. For reasons that slowly become clear throughout the film in an annoyingly textbook-like fashion, the 40-year-old Guy has exploited a loophole to force his way into the national spelling bee that normally includes no one past eighth grade. Technically, he never passed, so he's eligible, and as you'd expect, no one is happy about this. Contestants' parents want him scorned. The bee's head honcho (Allison Janney) assures he won't last. A journalist (Kathryn Hahn) tags along, financing Guy's travels, begging him for his agenda and, occasionally, sleeping with him and screaming, "Do not look at me!" Only 10-year-old competitor Chaitainya (Rohan Chand) wants a friendship with Guy, who responds with profanity and racism. It's almost like this guy watched "Bad Santa" and "Bad Teacher" and modeled his personality accordingly.