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Good Boys

All Areas > Entertainment > Film Review

Author: Joe Kennett, Posted: Tuesday, 24th September 2019, 09:00

(Left to right) Keith Williams as Lucas, Jacob Tremblay as Max and Brady Noon as Thor. Picture: Universal Pictures (Left to right) Keith Williams as Lucas, Jacob Tremblay as Max and Brady Noon as Thor. Picture: Universal Pictures

Take quite literally every stupid thing you may have said or done as a child and cram it into a 90-minute film; that’s essentially what first-time director Gene Stupnitsky has done with ‘Good Boys’.

On face value, the movie has all the potential to be a complete flop, with generic ‘boy’ humour and a plot line which could definitely be strengthened.

Yet, somehow, what we actually get is a brilliant new comedy with some real heart and emotion behind the storyline.

Starring Jacob Tremblay (‘Wonder’, ‘Room’), Keith Williams (‘The Last Man on Earth’) and Brady Noon (‘Boardwalk Empire’) in their biggest roles to date, these newcomers earn their rightful place on the big screen with commendable rapport and unforced acting, which sometimes suffers with a younger cast.

The boys star as sixth-graders Max, Lucas and Thor, who each face a coming-of-age dilemma from the off – Max has his first crush on popular girl Brixlee (Millie Davis), Lucas’s parents are filing for divorce, and Thor is scared of being bullied for his love of singing.

When the boys lose Max’s father’s drone in an attempt to learn how to kiss and end up in possession of Class A drugs, what ensues is a wild goose chase across town to find a new drone and avoid being grounded, all the while being involved in dodgy drug deals.

What resonates so well with this film is the naivety of the boys, who act as a constant reminder of what it was like to be 11 years old, how clueless we were, and the burning desire to cram as many F words as we could into a sentence.

What Stupnitsky has done here, with the help of Lee Eisenberg and Seth Rogen in producer roles, is to culminate the best, worst and cringiest moments of our childhoods into an epic celebration of young ignorance.

The humour is spot on; never forced, never rushed, and genuinely funny throughout.

Cinemas have lacked fresh comedy in 2019 so far, with box offices being dominated massively by superhero flicks, musical biopics and kids’ films, and with perhaps the exception of Seth Rogen’s ‘Long Shot’, ‘Good Boys’ is up there as the best comedy of the year.

Suffice to say, I did not have high hopes for this film, but being pleasantly surprised is always the best feeling at the cinema.

The casting for the film was perfect, and to be reminded of what it was to be a child trying to survive school was just pure delight for an hour or so.

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