Title: Good Boys
Release Date: August 16, 2019
Director: Gene Stupnitsky
Starring: Jacob Tremblay, Keith L. Williams, Brady Noon, Molly Gordon, Lil Rel Howery, Will Forte, and Midori Francis
Review: It was almost guaranteed that I would enjoy this movie. It had a whole lot going for it right out of the gate. First of all, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg were producing it. Attaching them is almost the same as attaching Lord and Miller in my mind. Whether it’s film or tv, I know that I’m going to get something different and raunchier. I also know it’s going to be top notch as, for my money, they haven’t missed since 2012. It also featured Jacob Tremblay who I am a massive fan of. His performance in Room is probably one of the best of the decade. Then the trailers came out and I laughed my butt off. This was looking to be the comedy of the year. So, did it live up to the hype? Kinda.
Unfortunately, while it (probably) did it’s job by attracting costumers, I think the Good Boys trailer ultimately hurts the movie. While I was still entertained, there was a lot of the movie where I was thinking “I sure would be enjoying this more if I hadn’t already seen it in the trailer.” You practically know 50% of the good jokes and situational comedy beats going in. Now, is that going to matter in ten years when someone goes to watch it for the first time? Or when it gets revisited over and over again? No. But, it kind of leads to a more disappointing experience the first time around.
That’s not to say there’s still not enjoyable moments to be had. Almost every joke or gag in this movie lands. And there are a lot of jokes. So, even if it is disappointing that the trailer showed so much, it’s still definitely a fun trip.
I can’t praise the three leads enough especially. They’re all three destined to do great things in the future. Their comedic instincts are perfect. I’m not sure how often they actually got the joke due to their age, but their innocence is really what sold it. (There’s part of me that hopes they were just naive as to why this stuff was funny.) Keith L. Williams especially was very good. He was by far my favorite character. His delivery of his lines was pitch perfect. I laughed at his scenes the most. I may have also related to him more on a spiritual level since I was the type of kid who avoided almost everything shown here. Though, I have to imagine (or hope) that most kids don’t experience quite this much.
Lastly, I was super impressed with how emotional this movie got in several parts. I was expecting to laugh but I never would’ve expected to tear up by the end. And that I did. It hits on so many things that every kid that age experiences. The hormones. The wanting to stay a child. The growing up way to fast. The awkward relationship with your parents. But, most of all, it hits on friendship and what it means at that age. And, on top of being hilarious, these kids were able to really sell the emotion of all of that. There’s just so much emotion and angst and love between these boys. I cry at everything but I think even the most cynical person will feel some emotion here. Tremblay especially was really good at making me cry. Not surprising since his performance in Room was so good. But, still. That kid is going to win an Oscar some day. I guarantee it.
TL;DR: While I wish the trailer hadn’t shown so much, Good Boys is still a really funny and genuinely heartfelt movie filled with three fantastic young lead actors.
Score: 4 Stars (I liked it.)