When Sam, Kayla and Julie’s pact to lose their virginity on prom night is found out by their colourful parents, a full spectrum of hilarity follows. In the grand old tradition of teen comedies about sneaking around parents to have sex, the bare bones of this storyline sound fairly routine. What’s so refreshing about Blockers is the movie’s totally original spin on this classic genre, one that we know well from the American Pie franchise and its successors.
Still, it’s high time that this genre was updated to reflect new and important sets of values, and that’s where Blockers seems to step in perfectly; it is able to put a focus on consent and inclusivity but still produce a laugh a minute. A far cry from the toxic masculinity of the 1990s, the film centres around a group of independent teenage girls who have a full handle on what they’re doing, whilst their parents struggle to grow up. Sex, drugs and cheesy pop are in full stock, but the audience is spared the problematic overtones that movies like this can sometimes project.
Between fast-paced car chases and naked games of “Marco Polo” there’s also plenty of room for great performances. John Cena shows that he’s more than a buff wrestler: he’s a sensitive father who finds himself bursting into tears on several occasions. Above all, the actor is absolutely hilarious and does not shy away from putting himself in compromising positions on screen. Geraldine Viswanathan (Kayla) also does an amazing job at portraying her zany, strong and occasionally goofy character. More than anything, though, the characters are helped by the sometimes daring script by Brian and Jim Kehoe, which pushes the film to some utterly strange comic heights.
Blockers is a smart movie not because it’s trying to say something different, but because it weaves its positive message in almost seamlessly. As a result, the picture becomes a new gold standard for modern teen comedies. In a sense, there’s a hope in it that, as far as this genre goes, this could be the new normal.
Blockers is released nationwide on 30th March 2018.
Watch the trailer for Blockers here: