Blockers Movie Review Staring John Cena and Kathryn Newton



 

Blockers is raunchy comedy at its finest. 

Three girls make a pact to lose their virginity on prom night, three parents try to stop them. The plot and the title hint that Kay Cannon's follow up to the rather tame and conservative 'Pitch Perfect 3'(which she wrote) is going to be an antithetical genesis of low brow humor and discourteous innuendos. Well, it is, though remarkably it is equally lofty in its raunchy content as it is remarkable in it's grounded touching emotional sentiment. And as Hollywood scours the map for equality in female director success, it's Canon who rises to the occasion, despite eye covering butt chugging antics being vanguard. 

The butt of the joke is John Cena, who plays a stiff sports dad, that's macho exterior contrasts his Nicholas Sparks emotional state. In the opening scene, Cena first meets his allies in the attempts at finishing the kids #sexpact2018, just 12 years before the remaining events take place. As he, Lisa (Leslie Mann), and Hunter (Ike Barinholtz) come to the fruition as they watch their kids skip off to the first day of elementary school that they're children have become best friends, meaning of course, that the three strangers have now become friends themselves.  Lisa is the facsimile of an attached mother, playing a timid trepidness as convincing as Ike Barinholtz does a detached father who finds humor in his careless inept qualities. The three of whom, in many ways, help put this teenage sex crazed comedy over the hump, albeit, the hyperbolic onslaught of visual gags that flirts with being unwatchable doesn't leave you sick(there is only so much vomit humor one can stomach in one sitting). 

Like past films 'American Pie' and 'Porkys', the plot coalesces a sex pact, although here it speaks on the silly absurdities of gender bias, rather than staging a hodgepodge of shy pimple infested perverts, as seen in say 'Superbad'. Yet like 'Superbad'-- 'Blockers' is at once a comedic farce of a "loss of innocence" and an exuberant fare-hearted coming of age tale for not only the three rambunctious and diverse teenage girls, but for the parents who one would presume, would have already come of age. See, this is a film as much about the parents as it is the kids, and all the better for it. One could even argue, that here, it's the kids who are doing the parenting, as they repetitively have to explain what it means to grow up, experiment, and be individualistic. 

The plot follows the daughters, after their uncouth altercations with their parents. Where Mitchell(John Cena) mistakes a toothbrush charger for a vibrator, his daughter's underwear for his wife's, and gives Kayla (Geraldine Viswanathan) a huddle pep talk on safety. Lisa (Leslie Mann) cuddles up on the couch and watches television with Julie(Kathryn Newton), as the two discuss college and the idea of staying local at not leaving Lisa's sight, and how Julie is to send pictures every thirty minutes at Prom to make sure she isn't having sex. Then there is Hunter (Ike Barinholtz), who suspecting his daughter Sam (Gideon Alden) is gay, rains down words of encouragement about how important such a monumental night is, after-all, he "thinks about that night every day". As the girls, and their oddball dates, enter the limo to start the night, the parents come across Julie's open laptop. Which reflects rapid-fire texts between the three daughters on the explicit details of how they are to be de-flowered, down to what candles will be bedside and turn them on. The parents, having finally depicted the emojis, set off on a Fast and Furious style mission to cock block. 

This is a divertingly funny movie, constantly reminding us we are not to be fooled by its breeziness and bland cliche aesthetic. It doesn't just bank on its superb comedic timing and performances, but the timeliness of the message--the two of which are harmonized with the directors assuredly confident touch. Sure, it's a commercial minded project, that's crass visual spectacle either is trying to one-up the last joke, or be a transition from its resonate critique on the universal tropes of parenting back to the quotable one-liners. Whatever the case, it earns our empathy. Joining this years 'Game Night' in the capsule of the modern raunchy genre capsule of movies that earned their laughs. Even if at times the jokes can be a pain in the ass.