Game Night is a witty, laugh-out-loud movie that will have you nodding your head while thinking, “Yes, I can relate to that.” This imaginative storyline features Gary (Jesse Plemons), the off-beat (everyone has known someone like this guy) next door neighbor to Max (Jason Bateman) and his wife Annie (Rachel McAdams). He used to be invited to their game night once a week when he was married to Debbie—who was really the one Max and Annie liked. But now Gary and Debbie are divorced and Max and Annie attempt to avoid inviting “weird” Gary to game nights. But the humor lies in the fact that Gary suspects this. Gary is outside his house when his neighbors arrive home from grocery shopping. Noticing all the food they bought, he asks if they are having a game night. They tell him no. Then he asks why they bought three bags of chips. “They had a three-for-the-price-of-one deal,” says Max. “That would be unprofitable for the store to do,” Gary observes.
And, as far as those “relatable” moments, who hasn’t seen a couple argue about petty jealousies? That’s what a couple, Kevin and Michelle, do—they bicker about a man Michelle once briefly hooked up with while she and Kevin were “taking a break” in their relationship. When they have a few drinks, the bickering gets worse. And who hasn’t had an obnoxious self-absorbed relative? In this case, it’s Max’s rich brother Brooks (Kyle Chandler), who went out and bought a Stingray for himself because he knows Max wanted one from the time they were kids. Brooks like people to know he’s rich, and he flashes constant reminders to everyone. In one comedic scene, Max and Annie are seeing a fertility specialist, who believes the couple’s infertility problem might be Max’s fault and tells him she’s not loving his semen. The specialist says it with such a straight face that it is hard not to laugh. Then, she seems more interested in getting a date with Brooks, Max’s brother, than actually helping the couple out.
Meanwhile, Brooks insists on having a game night at his luxurious home, and he manages to set up a “live” game night with actors coming in to kidnap and kill a victim, and the rest of the gang has to figure out “who done it.” Unfortunately, Brooks has been dealing in some shady matters, and some real-life kidnappers come to his home, knock out a federal agent who was there, and actually kidnap Brooks. One of the many funny scenes involves Max and Annie tracking Brooks and the bad guys down at a local bar. Annie gets ahold of what she assumes is a fake gun and begins waving it around, cussing out the bad guys and telling them to hit the floor. When they all learn it isn’t a game and that the gun is real, the adventure and action really kicks in, with more humorous moments to follow. Another relatable moment for the audience is when Gary is welcomed back to the gang because of something good he does. Don’t we all overlook faults in people because of the good points they have?
The film is R-rated so, although it is highly entertaining at times, it also contains strong content such as harsh language throughout and several sexual innuendos and comments. So, we can’t award this movie our Dove Seal.