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Keith L. Williams, Jacob Tremblay, Brady Noon in Good Boys

This year hasn’t been a particularly strong one for comedies so far. So at the end of the summer season, Hollywood is handing it off to the next generation to bring big laughs with the release of Good Boys. The R-rated comedy follows the misadventures of three 12-year-old boys who are ridden with the anxieties of being invited to a “kissing party” without ever have kissed a girl, crossing freeways, coming across sex toys and yelling F-bombs along the way.

The reviews are officially in for Good Boys ahead of its release this Friday,l and overall it has landed in the good graces of critics. Let’s start off with CinemaBlend’s own Eric Eisenberg, who awarded the movie with 4 out of 5 stars in his review. Check out his thoughts:

Poignant as it can be at times, though, it’s comedy that is always steering the ship, and the movie is littered with fantastic and memorable sequences… It plays at many speeds without veering too far away from reality, and is consistently funny.

He was impressed with the combination of hilarious comedic moments, emotional scenes and standout performances from young actors Jacob Tremblay, Brady Noon and Keith L. Williams. Their characters, who call themselves “The Beanbag Gang,” had him laughing from beginning to end, and these days that’s a tough find in movies.

Indiewire’s Eric Kohn also enjoyed Good Boys, comparing it to Superbad. Considering the writers of the 2007 classic, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg were producers on this release, it’s no wonder why. Here’s what Kohn said in his review:

It follows many of the familiar beats of a story about neighborhood boys who just want to have fun. But that formula has never centered on sixth graders, and the entertainment value of watching them curse their way through lewd daylong adventure injects fresh entertainment value into a familiar routine. While the pace is spotty and not every joke lands, Good Boys manages to be adorable and twisted at the same time.

Because Good Boys flips Superbad on its head and is told from the perspective of middle-schoolers, it finds a fresh angle to the raunchy bro comedy. Kohn also said there are plenty of “aww” moments to witness with the boys.

However, not every critic shared his enthusiasm for the movie’s bit. Check out the words of Guardian’s Kristy Puchko in her 3 star review:

It’s mostly the same jokes over and over: cute kids cursing and not understanding sex stuff. Initially, it’s jolting fun to see these baby-faced boys dropping F-bombs or mistaking a cache of BDSM gear for “weapons” and a sex doll for a CPR dummy. (“It’s sticky.”) But as the boys run screaming through the second act, these bits offer diminishing returns. The foul language becomes a bit numbing.

The Guardian writer found the jokes to get tiresome midway through the movie as it’s a whole lot of the same types of quips. This is certainly something to keep in mind, as not every moviegoer will find its humor endearing. However, she did say Good Boys redeems itself in the third act when the movie focuses on the characters over crudeness.

Variety’s Dennis Harvey was also unimpressed with Good Boys specific brand on comedy. Here’s what he said:

Good Boys is fast-paced and energetic, but its bad-taste humor seldom rises above the pedestrian. Even when the gags aren’t strictly scatological, as in a dangerous dash across a busy highway stretch (hey, gotta get to the mall one way or another) or a paintball skirmish at a frat house, they’re still not very clever.

It looks like whether the comedy strikes you as funny is up to your personal taste. “Clever” or not, Den of Geek’s Rosie Fletcher found this aspect of the film to be its best strength:

It’s a rite of passage for the three who are gently learning who they are outside of the safe haven of The Beanbag Boys, encountering teenage girls, first love and their own growing individuality. What makes this work so well is the central performances – all three kids are completely adorable and despite some bad judgments and misunderstandings, they really are all good boys.

The three kids lead Good Boys with earnestness and believability and it’s what grounds the comedy into something special, per Fletcher’s words. It’s not just about filthy mouths and gross gags, it has heart at its center!

Good Boys hits theaters this weekend alongside other new releases Angry Birds Movie 2, 47 Meters Down: Uncaged, Blinded By The Light and Where’d You Go, Bernadette? Will you be checking out Good Boys this weekend? Let us know in the comments below!

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