Good Boys (2019): ‘The Adult Child’s Comedy’ – A Film Review

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So, Jonah Hill and Seth Rogen may have only been producers for this film, Good Boys, but their stamps are all over it. It is no wonder that one of the trailers features Seth Rogan as himself. Beyond that, Writer/Directors Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg are relative unknowns but for TV and films like Year One and Bad Teacher. This comedy therefore has a much more similar tone to films like Sausage Party, despite the creative team being somewhat different. It makes for a strange set up, but once the film starts it all begins to fit in to place and makes sense. Despite the central characters being 12, this film really isn’t for 12 year olds.

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The Cast

This is both refreshing and awkward. Seen through the eyes of a kid but also the eyes of an adult, this film achieves a sense of humour that combines the naivety and imagination of children. Lots of stupid decisions, looking for answers, fear of irrational things and misunderstood objects and situations. The cast manage really impressively in their respective roles. A feat not easy amongst so many child actors. Charming, confused and charismatic aren’t traits that tend to be associated with young actors, but they manage it. Though their confusing situations strike a refreshing realism, as children start to try and understand puberty; but also an awkwardness, as they are too young for what they’re being exposed to. It’s an odd mix.

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The Nature of Comedies

How this is all pulled off is quite stunning. Comedies rely heavily upon the central cast and sometimes even the speed of the events. Somehow, despite the relatively unknown cast, they manage to keep this up. But this isn’t in performance alone; Cinematography, Editing and the Directing all work to keep this fast pace energy upheld so that events don’t get boring. Managing to push the cast to the forefront and the situations working around their naïve viewpoints – even if this is corrupted by the adult audience it is meant for.

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What we’re left with is quite a daring film. It certainly pushes the boundaries on adult humour. Showing us a comedy that plays on the naivety of a child, as if a parent, embarrassed and laughing at their child’s innocent discoveries. But this also manages to be quite awkward. It walks the line quite effectively, but it’s hard to escape the fact that they are 12, is this appropriate? Do they talk like that? Should they be exposed to such situations? It makes one wonder about the cast members themselves.



A trio of friends are invited to a party where they may get to kiss girls. Faced with this they try to find out how to go about kissing, when they quickly get involved in some teenagers’ more adult world.




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A Note on My Reviews

Please read ‘On Reviews‘ for a guide to how I write film reviews. Any spoilers are appropriately marked and, though I personally prefer to know little about a film before seeing it, there is a synopsis below the review for any who wish to see one.


Films Mentioned

Bad Teacher (d. Jake Kasdan USA 2011)

Good Boys (d.Gene Stupnitsky USA 2019)

Sausage Party (d. Greg Tiernan, Conrad Vernon USA 2016)

Year One (d. Harold Ramis USA 2009)


Further Reading

Official Site

Cast Interview

Gene Supnitsky Interview

Seth Rogen & Evan Goldberg Interview

Behind the Scenes

Meet the Grown Ups


If you liked this

Sausage Party (2016) – A Film Review

Long Shot (2019): ‘Modern Rom-Coms’ – A Film Review

IT (2017): ‘Horror or Comedy, Pennywise?’ – A Film Review


This was an analytical review of….


Good Boys (d.Gene Stupnitsky USA 2019)

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