Good Boys

Image result for good boys poster

Sorry my friend (you know who you are)…

The new film Good Boys has been causing a stir across social media and other platforms because they have placed three kids into an R rated, raunchy movie with lots of swearing and sex.  I even read an article online that said that the new movie was sexualizing children and some have even gone as far as to use the “P” word to describe the creators or the potential fans of the movie.  The faux rage from people who had not yet seen the movie, going only by the trailers, has been consistent with other films that seemingly have caused divisiveness in the audience.

As a middle school teacher, I will tell you that the language of these kids in the movie are very much the language of middle schoolers today.  They use curse words and they think and talk about inappropriate topics all the time.  While I would not necessarily claim that Good Boys is a realistic portrayal of pre-teens, the language and thoughts are not far from the truth.  The kids from the movie It spoke like kids speak.

Maybe you are someone who just does not want to hear kids using swear words or talking about sex, and that is perfectly fine.  Maybe you are someone who does not like the type of raunchy movie genre that this film would fall into and that, as well, is fine.  Honestly, I have my moments where I am not a huge fan of raunchy jokes in a movie.  Something like Sausage Party is funny to a point, but gets tiring after a while.  I do not dispute anyone’s right to not watch what they want.

However, you do not have the right to criticize something you have not seen.  You do not have to watch it, but you can’t then form an opinion on the overall movie because you chose to not watch it.  There are many Adam Sandler movies that I chose to skip because I do not like his brand of movies, but I cannot critique, say, his Netflix film with Jennifer Aniston, Murder Mystery, because I have not watched it.  Same thing happens here.

Because I will tell you that the raunchiness of Good Boys is countered with the fact that these three actors (Jacob Trembley, Keith L. Williams, and Brady Noon) are wonderful here and bring a balance of innocence to the proceedings that, while they say these things, make you understand that they do not really understand what is going on.

One of the examples for the sexualizing children crowd was the scene from the trailers with the boys in the sex swing.  This scene is so not sexual in nature and is counterbalanced with how much the boys really did not know that it turns out to be charming.  I wish they had left that out of the trailer because that would have been a big laugh if it was unfamiliar.

Truthfully, the film is not about sex, but, actually, it is about friendship and how some childhood friendships change over the years.  Some friendships grow apart as the kids inside them find that they are becoming different people.  I know this happened to me as a kid.  I had two very close friends through elementary school and we grew apart into junior high and high school while I got another group of friends with more things in common with me.  It did not mean that I did not like my elementary friends any more.  I was just not as close with them as I was before.  Good Boys is more about that than anything else.

Yes, there were several parts that did not work for me.  The whole drug aspect of the film was hard to buy, but it did lead to a ridiculous, but very funny, scene with the boys and a group of college drug suppliers.  The boys’ adventure meant that you had to stretch credibility several times, but I have said before that if something is funny, you are more willing to give leeway than if it is not, and Good Boys is funny.

Honestly, there were a couple of scenes that I laughed really hard at that I felt a little dirty doing it, but it was funny.

The three boys are great.  Jacob Trembley is a fantastic actor and has another really strong performance.  Keith L. Williams, who plays Lucas, is constantly the funniest of the group.  His character is so sweet and heart-felt that you cannot help but like him.  Brady Noon’s Thor is the glue that holds them together.  All three boys are given worries and concerns from their home lives or from school that are realistic and impactful.  They turn these moments into comedic gold.

Some parts of the story were all over the place but the message in the film comes through strong in the end.  The three boys are wonderful and play with such heart.  These really are good boys.  There may be gross out moments in the film with a ton of cursing, but these boys’ goodness shines through.  And the film has a definite idea that it wants to cover about friendship.  The film is truly about more than just sixth graders saying the F-word or talking about sex.

If you are easily offended, you probably do not want to see Good Boys.  If this type of movie is something that you find crude and something that you do not want to see in a movie, that is fine.  That is your right.  I disagree with you, and that is my right.

4.1 stars

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