BLOCKERS

★★★

Starring Leslie Mann, John Cena, Ike Barinholtz, Kathryn Newton, Geraldine Viswanathan, Gideon Adlon, Ramona Young, Gina Gershon, June Diane Raphael, Gary Cole, Graham Phillips, Hannibal Buress, Sarayu Blue
Directed by Kay Cannon
2018 / 102 Minutes / Universal Pictures

Review by Brent

Maybe I just wasn’t in the mood for a comedy the night I saw this. I didn’t find Blockers as funny as I was hoping. There were laugh out loud moments sprinkled throughout, but there were also a lot of weak awkward jokes that made me cringe. The theatre I saw this in there were only light chuckles coming from the crowd for the first half (however it did pick up). There was a sitcom humour feel that wasn’t flowing in the beginning that brought it down for me right off the start. Blockers never really takes off until about 20 minutes in. Everything previous to that felt clumsy and as if scenes were missing.

Leslie Mann, John Cena and Ike Barinholtz are three parents trying to stop their daughters from having sex for the first time on prom night.  It’s not until the parents discover that the girls have a sex pact that the movie starts find it’s footing and becomes humours. Blockers is full of the usual formulaic teen movie / gross out comedy schtick. Some works, some doesn’t. There are some fresh new gross out gags we haven’t seen before that will have you bursting out loud, but maybe not as many as you hope.

I think Leslie Mann is great, whatever she’s in she always shines and steals the movie, even if it’s a bad movie (The Comedian) she at least brings her comedic charm to the roles and I always enjoy her. She’s fun here and has some hilarious physical slapstick. One scene in particular had me laughing the most which involved some fancy maneuvering in a hotel room. Cena doesn’t really give us anything new, he’s John Cena and of course he’s playing the big strong guy with a huge heart, but he works and fits comedy well. And Barinholtz starts off annoying, but actually ends up having one of the more interesting storylines with his daughter. As for the young actresses playing the daughters, they certainly hold their own next to their well known co-stars. If anything they probably weren’t given enough screen time.

The premise worked and although it’s not new territory seeing teenagers wanting to lose their virginity at prom the parent part of it was unique and gave a different perspective. I think the biggest problem with Blockers was the lack of big laughs. I expected a lot more from it. I think there was potential to make a truly memorable comedy classic, but unfortunately for me this one isn’t going to be something I’m going to rewatch while flipping through channels on a Sunday when it airs in an edited for TV friendly version. I had more fun and laughed a hell of a lot more watching this year’s Game Night.

Grade C+

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