*Minor Spoilers Ahead* A couple of years have passed since we last saw
our hero Doug "The Thug" Glatt (Sean William-Scott) knocked out Ross
"The Boss" Rhea (Liev Schrieber) and things have changed. He's now
married to his girlfriend Eva (Allison Pill) and he's recently become
the captain of the Halifax Highlanders. We find out that a pro lockout
has brought more attention to the minor leagues and some of the pro
talent has temporarily entered the league. His buddies are still in
their old spots including Xavier LaFlamme (Marc-Andre Grondin) the
talented scorer with the inconsistent motor. The first game of the
season begins and Doug goes out and does what he can to protect his
teammates. One of the star players on the other team Anders Cain (Wyatt
Russell) takes exception and steps up to fight Doug. Doug is
exceptional at what he does but he's a one-dimensional player. He's not
there to play hockey, he's there to fight, hence his nickname The Thug.
Anders is a legitimately well-rounded player who can fight with the
best and still put up points. He's the son of the owner of the
Highlanders, Hyrum Caine (Callum Keith Rennie) and he's extremely
volatile. To the surprise of everyone, Anders puts down Doug hard and
Doug's right shoulder gives out. He's warned that he shouldn't be
playing hockey anymore. This makes things more difficult, Eva's having
a baby and he's got to make ends meet even if that means giving up
I'd like to get my bias out of the way, I loved Goon. Its such an underrated sports comedy and I revisit it often. One of the reasons the first Goon worked so well is that they created some really funny characters that were easy to like. Goon 2 made the smart move of bringing most of the old cast back so those same characters bring their charm back to the movie. I liked how The Last of the Enforcers put the effort into making some of the characters grow. Doug's a slightly better hockey player, Gord has become an assistant coach, Park is now the team doctor etc. I didn't like all the changes that came in however. For example Eva's missing a lot of her trademark attitude. I get she's matured a little and they brought in Mary to fill that role (more on her later) but it seemed like her character changed too much to fill the role that the plot had to have her in. The original also had one of the best and most sympathetic adversaries I've seen in Ross Rhea. Even though he was Doug's rival, he was still a decent guy, he mentored Doug and you identified with his struggle of aging out of the game. But Anders is not nearly as effective. I wouldn't blame Wyatt and to be fair they establish that his crappy attitude is a product of his dad's aloofness towards him. But you don't feel sorry for him, he's not likable enough to root for and he's not evil enough to hate. He's just a spoiled jerk and I was disappointed that they couldn't deliver that kind of special character in this one.
The most consistent thing I heard about this movie going into it was that the director Jay Baruchel (who also plays Pat) really tried to do something different filming the hockey scenes. After seeing this I have to agree, the one area where Goon: The Last of the Enforcers completely improved upon the original was the filming of the hockey scenes and the fights. The camera is constantly changing angles and it puts you right in the middle of the action. The hockey is pretty intense at points and I enjoyed it throughout. The fighting is brutal, the hits are hard and blood flies everywhere. They aren't completely realistic but they pack a lot of punch. I was pretty impressed and I think Jay could have a future making action movies.
Sean William-Scott was one of the biggest reasons that the first Goon worked. His performance came across as really heartfelt and it was really easy to get attached to Doug. I think Sean's good again here, he doesn't have the element of surprise in this one so he didn't have the opportunity to blow the audience away. Allison Pill was also really solid, her character isn't as edgy or funny but she does her part well. I was really happy that brought Liev Schrieber back. He gets the most effective character arc and he nails it again. The members of the supporting cast that came back are all good, Marc-Andre gets a lot less time but guys like Kim Coates, David Paetkau, Jonathan Cherry, Richard Clarkin pick up the slack. Of the new cast members Elisha Cuthbert was hilarious. I actually wish she was in the movie more. T.J. Miller was excellent in his supporting part, he's playing a typical T.J. Miller character but he's still really funny. Wyatt Russell was fine, he was undercut by his character.
Goon: The Last of the Enforcers is a really good sports comedy in it's own right and in some ways I feel like I'm being too hard on it. But in the end, in my opinion its just not as funny or has the kind of heart the first Goon had. This movie is far from a failure, however. They honestly could have just phoned this movie in and sent it straight to Netflix or DVD but they didn't. They brought in a great cast and produced a legitimately funny movie that also delivered some inventive hockey action. This movie is also solid enough that you don't have to be a big hockey fan to appreciate this. If you can get a chance to go see this (I think its only available in Canada right now) and you like your comedy a little more on the adult/raunchy side, give it a shot.
Goon: Last of the Enforcers
Comedy / Sport
Goon: Last of the Enforcers
Comedy / Sport
It's a new day for the Halifax Highlanders. A pro lockout has reunited old teammates and brought a crew of new players to the bench; notably missing from the line-up, however, is everyone's favourite enforcer and heart of the team, Doug "The Thug" Glatt. Sidelined after one too many hits and now married with a baby on the way, Doug is hanging up his skates and settling into life as an insurance salesman. But when Doug's nemesis, Anders Cain, is made captain of the Highlanders and new ownership threatens to tear his team apart, Doug is compelled back into action. Ignoring the wishes of wife Eva, Doug heads to the rink, discovering an unlikely training partner in fellow retired enforcer and one-time arch rival, Ross "The Boss" Rhea. Together with grit, passion and unrivaled loyalty, they will grind out one last chance to do what they do best...protect their team.
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September 22, 2017 at 07:18 PM