a BLOCKERS musing
Unlike most Apatow raunchy comedies of the mid/late-2000s, BLOCKERS is told from a different point of view and focuses on three pairs of parents and their respective daughters on the younger ones’ Prom night. They decide to make a pact to lose their virginity, and when the parents find out, they go on a mission to prevent that. It’s an outrageous concept that most comedies share in unpredictability, but as told from this type of relationship, it’s a much more touching and emotional journey than you would expect.
Even though I’m not high school age nor parental age, I found qualities in both sides of the story relatable. Recent meet ups with high school and college friends result in talk about how much we’ve changed since then, how wild we used to (or at least seemed to) be. But at the same time, I felt like I mentored many friends who are younger than me, and I get that parental/brotherly feeling that is reflected so well in this movie. The actors, both young and middle-aged, all do an excellent job at playing those aspects and really hit their emotional beats.
Ike Barinholtz is a major standout as Hunter, the outcast/divorced father of Sam. He’s frowned upon by most of the other parents for cheating on his wife, and his arc really stuck with me. I felt the same way with friends of fresh exes, the feeling that you don’t belong or are exiled. It may not be the same as what Hunter is going and went through, but it’s enough to establish that emotional connection to a character and want to cheer for his redemption.
As for the other parents, Leslie Mann and John Cena do great work as well, and are game (especially the latter) for all the bonkers set pieces thrown their way. This movie is directed by a female director, Kay Cannon, and really succeeds in making every single character pop or stand out, even the stereotypical Prom dates. You see why the girls would want to go out with those guys or girls, no matter how dweeby and lame they seem. All three daughter actors, Kathryn Newton, Geraldine Viswanathan and Gideon Adlon, slay the scenes with their parents.
BLOCKERS is a surprisingly emotional adventure that doesn’t overstay its welcome. Most comedies have a tendency to drag out scenes and set pieces, and this movie suffers a little bit from that, and some jokes don’t land and it can be a bit much at times. The marketing for this movie must have had a hard time selling this movie, as it does have zany humor, but a damn big beating heart at the center of it.
RATING: PURCHASING FOR MY COLLECTION
(Refer to my rating system HERE!)