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‘Buddy Games’ review: Gross out comedy tries to survive on low hanging fruit

Good for a laugh – possibly two.

Buddy Games is from the sub genre of bro comedies that will draw one of two reactions. It will make people laugh or cringe. There is little room for middle ground in a gross out comedy about a group of lifelong friends who have an annual contest that involves ridiculous physical challenges that involve Pina Coladas made of semen, dating challenges combined with diuretics, and a shared epiphany.

Unsurprisingly, there is nothing new to see here. The plot seems to revel in its predictability. One of the friends goes by “The Bobfather” (writer/director Josh Duhamel), for example. The titular competition is brought back in order to restore a competitor’s confidence in another trope. Buddy Games constantly works hard to stick with the norm.

This is not necessarily a bad thing if the jokes land. Buddy Games is not necessarily unfunny, It just never does anything new. Tea bagging, frontal nudity, and constant swearing are the order of the day here. Much like even the most generic jump scares will garner a reaction, the film realizes a pregnant woman operating a backhoe will elicit a giggle.

The attempts at adding emotion fall somewhere between insulting and a bad joke. As expected, the Buddy Games are driving a wedge between a couple. In this case, it is The Bobfather and his girlfriend. Buddy Games forgets about this aspect of the story for the most part. When it does remember, it is a touching moment that ends in tears. At least it might have been if the immediately preceding scene was not a borderline racist sex scene involving smelly flatulence.

'Buddy Games' review: Gross out comedy tries to survive on low hanging fruit

(For what its worth, the movie is from WWE Studios and wrestling fans will recognize Sheamus. It is a small role that barely registers. In other words, it is a great performance for a wrestler.)

Buddy Games steadfastly refuses to try anything new. It is a gross out comedy that thrives on gathering the lowest hanging fruit. This in and of itself is not a bad thing. Some movies are able to pull off sticking to genre formulas. In order to do so, it is necessary to stray at least a little from the norm. That never happens here. The movie is able to deliver juvenile giggles but nothing more.

Another movie that follows a formula, but with different results.

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