Buddy Games review – a chest-thumping, ball-breaking macho mashup | Film

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Licking a toilet brush would supply a taste less unpleasant than watching this grim comedy, a buddy gross-out movie that’s unfunny and offensive in equal measures. Blandly rugged actor Josh Duhamel writes, directs and stars in the story of a group of middle-aged friends who compete in an annual tournament of chest-thumping machismo. Every summer, the bros do battle in contests involving giant obstacle courses, mud pits, beer bongs and competitive hotdog-eating – with a bit of male bonding in the evening, as they drunkenly dangle their scrotums in each other’s faces.

Duhamel plays Bob – the “Bobfather” – who organises the games at a lakeside cabin. While the men compete, their wives and girlfriends tut indulgently from deckchairs. It’s the same every year until odious six-time champ Shelly (Dan Bakkedahl) takes a paintball bullet in the testicles, causing irreparable damage (“I’m like a Ken doll down there”). Unable to cope with the shame, Shelly vanishes. Bob finds him five years later in a rehab unit and decides to put the games on one last time in a bid to keep Shelly’s pecker up.

There’s a lot to be repulsed by here: it’s hard to know where to start. The female characters? Women are either hot and gagging for it, or definitely neither. Or the homophobic stereotyping? One of the buddies is gay, and this is his only character trait. The scene where they all drink cocktails containing semen is a low. But so, too, is the unhilarious challenge in a bar that involves the guys taking laxatives and getting a snog on the dancefloor before diarrhoea hits. Again, that particular smell might be less noxious than the whiff given off by the film.

Buddy Games is on digital formats from 30 November.

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Source: The Guardian
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