The new comedy Good Boys is a veritable pint-sized Superbad. Concerning sixth graders rather than high school seniors, it is still about a group of boys on a mission involving a party and is filled with plenty of crude humor and assorted hijinks that happen along the way. There are encounters that could go wrong at every turn, be they with cops, frat bros, and worst of all, teenage girls.
Our lead character Max (Jacob Tremblay) is head-over-heels for a girl named Brixlee and is excited to be invited to a kissing party where she will be present. He and his best buds, Thor and Lucas, decide to spy on their teen neighbor kissing her boyfriend, so Max will be prepared for his snogging shindig. In the process, things go wrong, and Max’s father’s drone gets taken by his neighbor Hannah and the boys end up with her drugs that she plans on taking at a music festival. They make a deal to meet at a playground for an exchange, but things go hilariously off the rails. The boys then end up on a crosstown adventure that puts their friendship to the test and leaves a hysterically funny trail of destruction in their wake.
Other than Jacob Tremblay, known to audiences from the films Room and Wonder, and the actors who play some of the parents, like Will Forte and Lil Rel Howery, the cast is comprised of unknown up-and-comers, all of whom impress. Brady Noon, who plays Thor, and Keith L. Williams, as Lucas, have great chemistry with Tremblay, coming across believably as long time best friends who have each others’ backs no matter what the situation is. Their characters also get their own interesting side stories. Thor’s is that he’s a musical theater geek confronting the uncool nature of his passion. Meanwhile, Lucas, ever the sensitive type, is dealing with his parents’ newfound separation.
Also, making an impression in the movie are Molly Gordon and Midori Francis as Hannah and Lily, the boys’ nemeses. They make the kids’ lives a living hell as they chase them across town in a singleminded pursuit to recover their lost pills of Molly. They are ever credible as the older sister types bullying and forcing their way to get what they want from the youngsters.
Co-written by Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky and directed by the latter, Good Boys comes with a solid comedy pedigree behind it. The aforementioned scribes wrote the Cameron Diaz hit Bad Teacher and over a dozen episodes of the American version of The Office. They also co-created Hello Ladies with Stephen Merchant, who appears in Good Boys in a very outré cameo.
If you’re looking for a good time at the movies and don’t mind plenty of foul-mouthed humor and sex toy related sight gags, Good Boys could be the comedy for you. I don’t bat an eye at such things, so I was able to have a rollicking good time when viewing it. I personally prefer my comedy to be R-rated, so Hollywood can keep these kinds of comedy coming & I will be happily grinning and guffawing myself away in the darkened cinema.
Recommended if you enjoyed: Superbad, American Pie, Role Models
FINAL GRADE: A-
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