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Some massive laughs, a huge Stephen Merchant cameo and the most impressive school play on film since Wes Anderson’s Rushmore are all on offer in this very funny teen – or rather tween – comedy from screenwriters Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky, with Stupnitsky directing. Both are script veterans of America’s The Office on TV.
It’s a bad-taste kids’ adventure that welds the spirit of The Goonies and Stranger Things with Superbad and Booksmart; the movie rests on the time-honoured premise of our young heroes’ obsession with a supercool party but ups the ante considerably in terms of chancy material and by virtue of the fact that these kids are pretty young: around 10 or 11.
Jacob Tremblay (who played the kid in the harrowing abduction drama Room) is Max, whose embarrassingly modern and understanding dad (Will Forte) keeps telling him how great it is that Max is masturbating now. Max is a member of a club called the Beanbag Boys – excruciatingly named after where they lie down on their sleepovers – with his two amigos: Thor (Brady Noon) and Lucas (Keith L Williams), both excellent.
They somehow get invited to a spin-the-bottle “kissing” party in which he may get to make out with Brixlie (Millie Davis), a girl he’s long been obsessed with. But they need tips on how to kiss, and so Max makes the catastrophic decision to use his dad’s drone to spy on the hot teenage girls next door. The resulting mayhem involves the boys not understanding the purpose of sex toys, and Thor is incidentally stressed about whether to audition for the school’s musical – a challenging production of Rock of Ages.
There are some outrageously sized gags and a genuinely sad and insightful moment when the Beanbag Boys wonder why exactly they are friends and how long their friendship will last.
• Good Boys is released in the UK and the US on 16 August and in Australia on 22 August.
Source: The Guardian
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