Blockers tries too hard to be a raunchy sex comedy about both the three girls who form a sex pact on prom night and their parents trying to stop the pact from happening. The result is a painfully unfunny comedy that overstays its welcome very quickly.
The Production: 1/5
Blockers is quite possibly the worst comedy I have had to view as a reviewer here at Home Theater Forum since Daddy’s Home 2 nearly five months ago. Three young girls meet one morning after being dropped off at school by their parents, growing up to be close friends while their parents aren’t exactly on the same terms. Prom night is tonight, and the girls make a pact to lose their virginity to their dates that evening. Their parents accidentally find out about the pact when one of the girls leaves her laptop on with her texting app running, and the race is on to find and stop the girls from going through with their pact, encountering many adventures along the way. The six main characters are mainstay stereotypes for the genre: Julie (Kathryn Newton) is the smart and pretty one, hiding her acceptance letter to UCLA from her single mother, Lisa (Leslie Mann); Kayla (Geraldine Viswanathan) is the athlete adored by her jock father, Mitchell (John Cena); and Sam (Gideon Adlon) is the sexually confused nerd dealing with an absentee father, Hunter (Ike Barinholtz), trying to right his past by renting a limo for the girls. The parents crash the prom, then crash every after-prom party, just missing the girls by minutes. First-time director Kay Cannon (best known for her screenplays for the Pitch Perfect trilogy) tries to have it both ways by making the teenage girls’ adventures and the parents’ adventures play as broad, raunchy comedy, but fails in both regards as the two combined just are not funny. Perhaps the film would have played better if it had centered on one or the other. Even worse, the adventures of both the girls and parents are often repulsive and not remotely funny on their own: administering a beer enema to John Cena, interrupting a mature couples sexual antics (not once, but twice), a projectile vomiting scene that goes on way too long, etc. In case you were wondering, my 1 out of 5 rating above is definitely not a typo.
3D Rating: NA
Universal’s 1080p AVC-encoded transfer looks pretty decent. Colors are vibrant without bleeding (particularly the bright yellow blouse worn by Leslie Mann and her daughter’s red prom gown). Contrast is very good with deep black levels that reveal little to no crush, especially during the exterior night time sequences. Detail is also quite good, providing nice textures in fabrics and in Ike Barinholtz’s beard stubble.
The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track provided is just a notch above your standard comedy track, but is still fairly front-heavy with a wide soundstage. Surrounds are implored during the loud party sequences, providing some depth and ambience to the scenes. LFE is adequate, used mostly to give the modern songs an extra punch. Dialogue is clear and understandable throughout.
Special Features: 2/5
These are all pretty standard EPK fare one expects to find on a Seth Rogen-produced film.
Deleted Scenes (1080p; 2:34): Three scenes are provided – See Ya Later, Suckers, Olds Blocking the Beam, and Rudy “the Main Man” Glover.
Gag Reel (1080p; 2:39)
Line-O-Rama (1080p; 7:26)
Rescue Mission (1080p; 5:14): A look at the main characters and overall making of the film.
Prom Night (1080p; 6:37): A cast and crew discuss the girls’ pact.
The History of Sex with Ike Barinholtz (1080p; 2:06): Barinholtz gives a brief, tongue-in-cheek history.
John Cena’s Prom Survival Kit for Parents (1080p; 2:35): The actor demonstrates some items from his “kit.”
Chug! Chug! Chug! (1080p; 3:20): A discussion of the rear beer chugging scene.
Puke-A-Palooza (1080p; 2:02): A look behind the scenes of the projectile vomiting scene.
Audio Commentary with Director Kay Cannon: Cannon doesn’t have a whole lot to say about the film, as there are very long gaps throughout the track.
DVD Copy: The movie in 480p with Dolby Digital 5.1 audio and all of the above listed special features.
Digital Copy: An insert contains a code to redeem a digital copy thru Movies Anywhere.
High marks for audio and video, low marks for the movie and extras. I highly advise renting before purchasing.
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