Game Night

You’re tired it’s been a long week, you want to get pizza and chill with a fun movie, we may have the answer.

“Annie” (Rachel McAdams) and “Max” (Jason Bateman) are a competitive couple. They love their quizzes, charades and any game that involves a winner/loser.

Together with their buddies, “Sarah” (Sharon Horgan), “Ryan” (Billy Magnussen), “Kevin” (Lamorne Morris) and “Michelle” (Kylie Bunbury), the group have a regular “Game Night”, play competitive games, have a drink, enjoy the fun.

Ryan is not the sharpest tool in the box, bringing a different girl each time. Rather than helping, his girlfriends usually spend their time taking selfies. Kevin and Michelle are happily married, until a “did you ever”, leads them to an amusing crossroads.

Max and Annie also deliberately and methodically exclude recently divorced local cop and neighbour “Gary” (Jesse Plemons) from their soiree, it’s not too difficult to discern why.

Max also has a teeny weeny inferiority complex about his more successful and better looking Wall Street brother “Brooks” (Kyle Chandler). There is much for Max to be envious about.

When Brooks decides to take Game Night up a notch by staging a fake hostage situation, like a murder mystery type gig. It’s all fun and games, until someone loses an eye, well actually they don’t but things certainly don’t turn out as planned.

The story revolves around gangsters, blood, dogs and a natty line in DIY bullet wound surgery, anesthetized by a rather cheeky Chardonnay. Nothing is what it seems but the emphasis is on fun and laughs, with a healthy dose of good natured swearing of course.

Bateman can play these parts in his sleep and does not disappoint, Adams matches his comic timing and both receive solid support from Chandler.

Magnussen is clearly having fun, putting the “u” in stupid, with Morris and Bunbury maintain an amusing long running joke through the screenplay. Plemons plays his part with the straightest of straight bats, getting laughs along the way.

Overall this is harmless fun and remembers to actually be funny, something many comedies seem to forget, relying more on “dick” jokes instead. There is no deep message other than possibly, enjoying what you have rather than wanting more but that’s as deep as it gets.

The film does not outstay it’s welcome at around 100 minutes, which is about right for this type of movie, a point some other directors might wish to note.

Of course with $117m box office on a $37m budget, a further gaming night is likely to be planned. Whether the premise can be stretched that far, remains to be seen but if I was a betting man…..


A fun film that does pretty much does what it says on the tin.

The term hilarious gets bandied around easily but a good solid night’s entertainment, with laughs a plenty and represents the perfect antidote to a long work week.