BLOCKERS – Film Review

Kay Cannon’s directorial debut film Blockers has some pacing issues and occasionally some jarring sequences, but luckily, the film is genuinely funny and will more than likely win over most audiences.

Three parents, Lisa (Leslie Mann), Mitchell (John Cena), and Hunter (Ike Barinholtz) are ordinary parents who look out for their three daughters, and get excited for their upcoming prom night. However, soon the parents figure out that the teenagers are planning on losing their virginity on prom night, which makes the three parents go on a chaotic journey to find where their kids are and stop them from losing their virginity.

Cena and Barinholtz are the true standouts in Blockers. Each and every single time their characters of Mitchell and Hunter were on screen together, something funny was bound to happen. They work so well off of one another thanks in part due to their absolutely magical chemistry that makes it seem like the two actors have been best friends for years and are finally getting to make a film together.

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John Cena (left) as Mitchell and Leslie Mann (right) as Lisa in Blockers (2018).

Another great addition to the cast is Geraldine Viswanathan as Mitchell’s daughter Kayla. She does make probably the most bad choices throughout the film, but as the film comes to a wrap in the third act, you start to feel more sympathy for her.

All that aside though, Blockers does suffer sometimes from a rather slow and clunky pace. The motion picture will occasionally focus and stay on one character and one location for so much time that you think that the film may be leaving certain characters in the dust for some reason. Blockers is a fairly short film clocking in at one hundred and two minutes in length, but feels a lot longer. It would have been nice to have a smoother and faster paced story.

Several scenes in Blockers felt like they were supposed to be the ending to the film because of how natural and conclusive they felt, but the scenes actually weren’t the final ones to be shown in the film. It was rather jarring to see these scenes go on and on, and it almost felt as it the final two scenes in the film were added in later due to a possible reshoot.

Something else that is worth noting is the inclusion of the song “Love Myself” by American singer and actress Hailee Steinfeld. The song can be heard more than once in the film, and the first time you hear it, you may just think it is there for no reason. But once it plays for the second time, you will more than likely begin to realize that is most definitely inserted in the film for a good purpose. It all ties in with the film’s moral of the story in a great way that I never expected.

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Gideon Adlon (left) as Sam, Kathryn Newton (middle) as Julie, and Geraldine Viswanathan (right) as Kayla in Blockers (2018).

(NOTE: Cannon served as a writer and producer for 2015’s Pitch Perfect 2 as well as its 2017 sequel Pitch Perfect 3. Both of those films star Steinfeld).

The number one goal that a comedy is supposed to have, is to make the audience laugh. Although I did not belly laugh at Blockers too many times, I still had a blast and still thought there were several laughs to be had. One scene in particular in the second act is one of the funniest scenes in a comedy film in years.

Blockers can suffer at times from clunky pacing and has some unnecessary scenes in its conclusion, but it makes up for it with great humour and has brilliant chemistry from John Cena and Ike Barinholtz.

To watch my video review for Blockers, please click this link: https://youtu.be/YJqi9eTs0UI

Overall Grade: B

MPAA Rating: R for crude and sexual content, and language throughout, drug content, teen partying, and some graphic nudity

Cast: Leslie Mann, John Cena, Ike Barinholtz, Geraldine Viswanathan

Directed by: Kay Cannon

Distributed by: Universal Pictures

Running Time: 102 minutes

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