It’s hard to believe that Superbad is over 12 years old. The film was by far the funniest film of its kind when it came out, and became a huge hit for the studio. Now the same people who brought you that movie have released a new one, substituting high-school kids for grade school kids, with a whole new set of problems.
The film follows the story of three grade 6 kids who decide to use one of their father’s drones when they are told not to. The drone accidentally gets destroyed however, and the boys find themselves skipping school in order to try to replace it. The resulting adventure is one they are sure to remember forever.
The problem with Good Boys is the age of the children. While their naivety is amusing at times, there are other instances where the comedy is just cringe inducing because you don’t really want to think about kids in the context in which they’ve been placed. The gags seem very forced at times as well because of this, and it seems like the writers can’t decide what are things the kids would understand, and what they wouldn’t. For instance they somehow know how to fix a dislocated shoulder, yet don’t recognize some very obvious sex toys and use them as weapons. While the outcome is funny, it also doesn’t make any logical sense. Switching between different genres is jarring as well. At times it wants to play out as a comedy, yet it switches between that and a childhood drama on a consistent basis. While the best comedies always have dramatic elements to them, they typically keep the focus on one or the other. Good Boy doesn’t do that. It wants to be both genres. Good Boys has its moments where you are laughing pretty good at their jokes, but the writing and directing needed to be a little less sloppy to make it a memorable film.
The Blu-ray release of Good Boys has a fair number of special features, and some of them are fun to watch. The extended and deleted scenes, while not adding anything to the film, do add some extra jokes that are enjoyable. The gag reel is by far the best though, and well worth watching. The behind the scenes documentaries however are very short, and unless you really enjoy the film, don’t add anything interesting.
In the end, if you are looking to laugh at younger people stumbling through growing up, watch Superbad. It’s by far the more enjoyable film. Good Boys has its moments, but the majority of it slogs through the predictable story until it draws to the very obvious conclusion. Good Boys is available now on DVD and Blu-Ray.