Saturday, January 19, 2013

Garbage blows in my face sometimes.

Today, the hockey season will finally begin. If you're not a fan, you likely don't give a damn. And even if you are a fan, you should do your best not to, either. See, the owners and the players couldn't get their shit together, and half the season was forfeited.  At this point, no one cares, but for a minute or two, I missed hockey. Really. I mean, few other professional sports allow two players space and time to beat the shit out of each other. 

With sticks.

Goon tells the dreaded based on a true story of hockey enforcer Doug 'The Thug' Glatt. I'm not interested enough to research the facts, but it's probably a safe bet that some liberties were taken with actual events. Let's start at the beginning, eh?

While attending a minor-league hockey game one night, a player for the visiting team foolishly enters the stands looking for an ass to kick. Doug intervenes, and completely f--king devastates the player, moments after his third corn dog. The crowd goes wild as Doug thinks nothing of it. He's a bouncer. Kicking ass is what he's good at. Scratch that. Great at.

Naturally, the home team is terrible and the coach has an idea so crazy it might just work. Let's get that random, ass-kicking citizen in here to join the team. Who gives a shit if he's never played hockey, let alone can't f--king ice skate. After a few missteps where he screws up royally, this absurd experiment will inevitably work out in the end. You know why? Because in these types of movies, it always does.
Like almost every other sports movie made, Goon is incredibly predictable. You're pretty sure what's going to happen next and you're damn sure how it will end. But, it does have one notable surprise. The insane level of graphic violence. Sure, hockey is a violent game anyway, but here it's breathtakingly savage. They might not fight all the time, but when they do, it's f--king bonkers. There are no camera tricks involved, no imagination needed. Faces simply get destroyed. Often.

Speaking of the permanently disfigured, once again here are the Yays and Boos. Huge Boston Bruins fans, those two. Just don't mention Tim Thomas around them. They get enraged emotional about it.

Face save and a beauty! Face saaaaaaaaaave. And a beauty.
  • Liev Schreiber brings a much-needed touch of class to the proceedings. His Ross The Boss Rhea is the expiring goon, hanging on for one last tilt with Doug. That said, somebody owes Marty McSorley a dollar.
  • Hockey players are known as being the nicest athletes around. I loved it when Doug would apologize to someone after beating the Hell out of them.
  • Though the term goon applies to Doug in more ways than one, I think the coach sums him up best: Touched by the fist of God. 
  • The locker room stuff is pretty funny. Divorced Guy was awesome, but constantly f--king with the goalie trumps it, even if just a little.
  • Pretty sure describing an awful rendition of O, Canada as borderline treasonous is borderline awesome.
  • Clearly, the fighting is the best part of this movie (and as some jerks would say, the best part of hockey in general), and there are at least four incredible fights. The savage crossing-the-line beating in Quebec was a standout, even though it took a turn. But the all-out brawl after Doug preserves victory with his face has to be seen to be believed. Insanity.
  • And finally, my dream. Just once in my life, just once, I want to walk in slow motion flanked by serious men. In most movies, it's impossibly cool. In Goon, it's even better. Goon throws in slow motion snow. And bagpipes.
This scene isn't a boo. The injury that Glatt gets is.
  • Any jeering has to start with Doug, played by Sean William Scott. Sure, I liked the guy enough, but he's not a character. Most of his dialogue is simply him repeating the last line someone else said. 
  • Oh, and they try to give him a love interest, too. It's bad, almost painfully so. This Pill wasn't the miracle sur
  • Even worse, is the annoying friend character, played by Jay Baruchel. I used to think cursing in every single sentence, in every single situation was cool. But then I turned twelve. Though, his thorough explanation of winning a prize of fifity c--ks in his mouth actually cracked  me up. A lot.
  • What kind of team initiation is signing the new guy's dick?
  • And finally, wasted ice time. The hockey action is so well done, it's a shame the whole movie wasn't comprised of it. Because, like the lockout itself, the problem wasn't the game, just the stupid people and drama surrounding it.
I'd say about 99% of the population, and 100% of the people who read this blog (yeah, both of you) should stay very far away from this movie. I love the NHL, hell even minor league hockey, and this movie was just north of watchable. The rest of you will wish you'd taken a Steve Stifler Tuttle skate to your neck.

Let's put Goon in the penalty box.

Two minutes for sucking.


  1. I'm probably going to stay away from this one since the only role from this guy I like is Stifler :)

    I did enjoy playing hockey in high school - we played this weird version of it in the school building, without the ice skating part. I loved hitting all the girls I didn't like with that stick :)

    1. Yeah , I tried to get through the entire post without a Stifmeister reference, but that turned out to be impossible. Next time...

      Hawai'i didn't allow for much hockey in my high school days, though my friends played street hockey. But if hitting someone with a stick counts, then my older brothers and I played hockey all the time growing up.

      Why do I imagine you as a rather violent hockey player? Hmm...

  2. It's a very conventional but enjoyable little sports comedy, a light non-commitment that's biggest downside is it's annoyingly immature sense of humor. Nice review M.

    1. Agreed with the non-commitment idea, Dan, but I think that applies to everyone involved in making this flick.

      I'm not sure why I expected more, but for some reason, I did.

  3. I started watching this once and stopped because I thought I just wasn't into it. Guess it wasn't me this time.

  4. I checked with a friend as well, and he thought it pretty much sucked, too.

    Weird. I should have loved it. Hope I'm not actually maturing or some shit.