Goon (8/12/12)

GoonMovie One Hundred Eighty Nine

In Goon, a nightclub bouncer becomes a hockey star by fighting his way into the sport.

Doug Glatt (Seann William Scott) is the nicest bouncer around, apologizing to a man who he was being “bounced” from the bar as Doug was hitting him in the face. His hockey-loving friend, Pat (Jay Baruchel), takes him to a hockey game and when one of the players makes his way into the stands to fight Pat, Doug steps in to fight and becomes the star attraction. Doug is offered to play for a local team acting as a bouncer for the players on the ice and has to learn to skate. Doug is then promoted to a better team to guard their star player and becomes the target for veteran hockey thug, and Doug’s personal hero, Ross “The Boss” Rhea (Liev Schreiber).

Goon is the perfect example of “don’t call it a sports movie”. Yes, the film centers around hockey, but all you really need to know about hockey is that they skate on the ice, they shoot a puck into the net to score, and occasionally they fight. Goon is really about a somewhat dimwitted guy trying to find himself and he stumbles upon something he’s good at and tries to make his parents proud. I will concede that the film follows a familiar pattern that many sports movies have laid out, but at least Goon is different.

Seann William Scott is an actor that may turn some people off of Goon before even watching it, but Scott is very subdued and actually does a good job as Doug. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Jay Baruchel, who is a constant shrieking of douchebaggery every second he is on screen. I kind of just cringed and hope he would pass. Still, Scott’s humor was subdued and effective here, I laughed more than a few times but I wouldn’t quite call Goon a comedy, but it is comedic.

While Goon may not be a classic film, it sets out to tell a story and it does so effectively and doesn’t overstay its welcome. I found a lot to like, and was always a bit surprised whenever I would read positive press, but now I can fully see why and Goon deserves it. If you have been put off by Goon being a sports movie, it’s not, and if you were put off by Seann William Scott, don’t be.

I give it 4 penalty boxes out of 5.


Rotten Tomatoes


21 responses to “Goon (8/12/12)

  1. I’ve seen and heard good reviews on this film and I think it is on Netflix instant. I think I will check it out. Good review. For me, writing about comedies (only if I like them) is really hard because of how personal taste in humor can be.

    • It is indeed on IW!
      I’m in the same boat for comedies and since the humor is not the focus, it could be easy to dismiss Goon as a result. The film had lots of other things going for it aside from humor though.

  2. I really liked Goon too, and fully expected not to. I’m not a hockey fan and I confess I went to see it mostly because it’s set in my former hometown of Halifax (although it wasn’t filmed there). Seann William Scott was oddly endearing, but yeah, Jay Baruchel’s character was just way too much. He was a writer on the project so you’d think he’d have given himself more to work with. I really enjoyed him in The Trotsky though (one of my favourite little films of 2009), so I’m hoping his abrasive performance in this was just a blip. I also found Goon surprisingly likeable. Great review, Andy!

  3. This is an excellent review but I still have no interest in seeing this film. The whole idea of the plot just doesn’t work for me (which is unfair to say really if I haven’t seen it but still).

  4. I haven’t seen the movie yet, but every time I see the cover I start singing the late, great Warren Zevon’s “Hit Somebody” (The Hockey Song). It’s about a hockey goon, too and features a vocal cameo by David Letterman.

  5. I must admit that Sean William Scott’s presence made me somewhat wary of this movie, but I think I’ll actually make an effort to watch this movie now.

  6. Nice review, Andy! I agree, Scott can be off-putting but he’s very good when he’s, like you said, subdued. I liked him in Role Models. Many people agree that Baruchel was fairly irritating, too. Anyways, this movie sounds fun.

  7. Pingback: My August Movies Round-Up | Andy Watches Movies

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