A group of friends who meet regularly for game nights find themselves trying to solve a murder mystery.
Sharp comedy, fast plot and a surprisingly tasteful serving of ‘whodunits’ which kept me in good supply of laughter and surprises. In a time when ‘whodunit’ stories, parties and movies are on the come-back, I would have never guessed that it would a comedy that would take a lead in keeping the suspense on the edge of my seat. Okay, a lot of the plot is not to be taken seriously as you would expect in an Agatha Christie movie, but the plot is nonetheless full of twists and turns that will keep you on your toes.
Now I don’t want to build the mystery murder side of the film up too much in case it gives you the wrong impression. So, to be clear, this is a middle of the road comedy that plays around with satire, here and there, and drops a pinch of romance to keep the pace moving and interesting, which is arguably Jason Bateman’s film and television staple for as long as I can recall. He does this type of role really well.
The story is centered around a very competitive couple, Rachel McAdams and Jason Bateman, who are always finding new ways to challenge their gaming egos. Jason, who seems to be the untouchable ‘quiz king of trivial pursuit’ meets his equal Rachel and together they seem set to rule the waves of couple’s game nights which they regularly host at their house. That all changes when Jason’s elder brother, who is the ‘super successful maverick’ of the family, hijacks the evening. From that point on the plot thickens and thickens with miss-understandings and wild goose chases.
The cast are very strong in this movie as are the directors, John Francis and Jonathan Goldstein. They allow a lot of time for simple scenes to really develop. As a result, some of the most mundane situations and conversations end up being hilarious. Too often scenes are rushed in comedy movies in order to further the plot. Game Night doesn’t do that. There is a lot of space for the comedy to breathe which allows for the situations to mutate into ideas the I am quite sure were never in the script. For this reason, I voted ‘gutsy’ when it came to direction. It’s great to see some of the scenes and dialogue that would normally be left with the out-takes and bloopers, in the story and on the screen.
A thoroughly enjoyable film which brought out all kinds of emotions. I had a good laugh and was duped at least once or maybe twice by the plot twists. Having said that, this is not a whodunit so don’t go with your crime fighter’s cape of sleuth’s hat. Expect a laugh and enjoy a well-made comedy.
Releases: 22nd February 2018
Duration: 100 minutes
Duration: 100 minutes
Starring: Rachel McAdams, Jason Bateman, Jesse Plemons
Director: John Francis Daley, Jonathan Goldstein