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by Matt Christopher

Equal parts laugh out loud moments and eye-rolling, humorless lines – the 2019 comedy “Good Boys” is a fun way to end the summer movie season.

Its youthful cast and the school-age premise is similar to a typical ‘80s film, mixed with present-day technology and situations, and topped off with the crude jokes of “The Hangover” or “American Pie.”

The movie stars three child actors as the focus of the plot. Max, Lucas, and Thor have been best friends since kindergarten and now find themselves on the precipice of the dreaded sixth grade. We can watch and appreciate the friends as typical kids on the cusp of becoming teenagers, each with their own identity and genetic makeup making most of the decisions for them.

Max (Jacob Tremblay) is driven by his raging hormones, Thor (Brady Noon) will do anything to sit with the cool kids at lunch, and Lucas (Keith L Williams) is still clinging to childhood. The three actors are as capable as child actors can be – hysterical at times, but poor as well. There are virtually no adults in any of the starring roles, with college-aged girls Hannah and Lilly (Molly Gordon & Midori Francis) serving as antagonists for the outlandish plot.

Anyone watching this movie can appreciate the characters and the changes they go through. As a serious story, it would be a heart-wrenching tale. In fact, one of the best facets of this movie is its ending – which, while offering no spoilers, is rather bitter, given its authenticity.

“Good Boys” also lacks focus and direction, seeming to go off the rails with absurd over the top scenes and blatantly slapstick antics. As mentioned before, it’s still funny, and if you’re looking to laugh, it’s perfect. But unlike “The Hangover” there is no solid story tying it together. The kids are trying to attend a make-out party at the home of the coolest kid in the school. What develops is an adventure that is only obscurely related. But, at one hour and twenty-nine minutes, it’s never dry. I’d be lying if I told you I didn’t burst out laughing numerous times.

“Good Boys” is funny and plays out like one would expect it to; it won’t win any Academy Awards, but you would be hard-pressed not to enjoy yourself.

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