EVERYBODY WANTS SOME!! Movie Review
Everybody Wants Some!! is a joyfully goofy, irreverent comedy that skews heavily to the male jock audience and young adults of the 1980’s. Yet, beyond the laughs, Richard Linklater offers little substance for audience members outside its target demographic, and its story is one that is quickly forgotten.
American pop culture has seen some extremely interesting decades over the course of the last 100 years that can often be defined by major events in the world. Going back to the early 1910s with World War I, to the 1920s and 1920s being affected by the start of The Great Depression and World War II, which continued into the 1940s, the 1960s saw the Vietnam War and began the flower power era, which spilled into the 1970s and disco fever. The 1980s were…what were the 1980s? Short shorts on men, shorter shorts on women, cut off t-shirts were acceptable for all genders, ages, and social classes, and LPs were still spinning on record players. Much like the 1970s capture in Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused, the 1980s was a unique time that is likely to not be replicated unless you are to take a trip down memory lane in films like Everybody Wants Some!!.
To be frank, Everybody Wants Some!! is geared at a very specific demographic, and depending on if you do or do not fit into that target audience the viewing experience could vary greatly. This is a film dominated by male humor, with virtually all male leads, doing stereotypical goofy male things. Did I mention they are also jocks, who enjoy partying, and love to talk about trying to get girls? Yes, this is that kind of a movie. As a current and former athlete, a baseball player to boot, this movie was right in my wheelhouse of humor so bear that in mind when reading this review.
That is not to say that the humor in Everybody Wants Some!! is outside of the realm of understanding, and many of the moments of laughter can cross gender barriers, but if you are looking for a film that highlights the progression of women that occurred during the 1980s, this is not the movie for you. Everybody Wants Some!! is a movie about “bros being bros” with a light romance angle and decade related nostalgia thrown in. Temper your expectations accordingly.
To Linklater’s credit, he continues the path he set forth in Dazed and Confused by casting many very unknown, or little known, actors in major roles in the ensemble comedy. Blake Jenner is the de facto lead in the role of Jake, a freshman pitcher at the fictional Southern Texas University, along with the rest of his incoming class, the returning players, and even a few transfers. While Jenner does well in the film, and we may in fact look back upon this cast in years to come and see some to the stars of tomorrow-much like Dazed and Confused helped launch the careers of Ben Affleck, Matthew McConaughey, Milla Jovavich, and Parker Posey, to name a few. Tyler Hoechlin, Wyatt Russell, Temple Baker, J. Quinton Johnson, Ryan Guzman, Juston Street, Austin Amelio, Tanner Kalina, Forrest Vickery and Glen Powell compromise the remainder of the main cast and all bring a great deal of comedy to the film with their respective characters. Zoey Dutch stands as the only female character given multiple speaking scenes and does well with her material. However, Everybody Wants Some!! is not the kind of cinematic experience where people go to see Oscar winning performances. The actors do well playing caricatures of stereotypes, but depth is not the emphasis of the content.
Everybody Wants Some!! is exactly what it is advertised as, with no grand examination needed. It is a fun snapshot of the decade both in sound and personality, with a killer soundtrack. It is a time capsule of an era often forgotten and a microscopic coming of age tale told through various comedic characters. The story itself is uneventful and rather pointless, which while never the point of the film, does make it rather hollow and forgettable. While it will often be compared to Linklater’s Dazed and Confused, and for good reason, Linklater’s earlier work did possess more heart than Everybody Wants Some!! There is fun to be had, although it is empty and rather meaningless. Still, there is something to be said for simple, unfiltered humor and in that regard Linklater delivers it in spades, even if the subject matter leaves much to be desired.
Everybody Wants Some!! is written and directed by Richard Linklater and stars Blake Jenner, Tyler Hoechlin, Wyatt Russell, Temple Baker, J. Quinton Johnson, Ryan Guzman, Juston Street, Austin Amelio, Tanner Kalina, Forrest Vickery, Glen Powell, and Zoey Dutch.