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A fresh, funny & frivolous comedy that turned out way better than I expected it to be, Game Night keeps swinging from serious to ridiculous without ever losing its lighthearted vibe and benefits a lot from the jolly characters who are wonderfully brought to life by its cheerful ensemble.




The plot follows a group of friends who meet regularly for game nights on weekends. Things take an unexpected turn one night when a role-playing mystery game that was arranged by the shady brother of one of them turns into a real-life scenario when he is kidnapped for real by burglars.

 

Directed by John Francis Daley & Jonathan Goldstein, the film at first looked like a recipe for disaster but as plot progresses, it gets better, funnier & more engaging. The sense of fun isn’t lost even when things take a serious turn and the directing duo do a neat job at pacing the narrative and keeping things light & breezy.

Dialogues are sharp & witty, the entire ensemble does feel like a single unit, and the twists & turns are at times predictable while other times surprising. Editing is a major plus, unfolding the drama at a swift pace while trimming down whatever it can do without while its synth score adds an energetic beat of its own to the mix.

Coming to the performances, Game Night packs a reliable cast in Jason Bateman, Rachel McAdams, Kyle Chandler, Jesse Plemons & others. And although everyone chips in with excellent inputs and seems to be having fun, the ones who leave the most lasting impression are McAdams & Plemons, especially the former who brings a certain oomph to her character that makes her moments even more fascinating.




On an overall scale, Game Night is a smartly scripted, skilfully directed, brilliantly acted & cleverly humoured comedy that promises a good time and delivers it in sufficient doses. A genuine delight that’s well aware of its strengths & limitations and knows when & where to draw the line, Game Night is an unexpected surprise of the year that’s definitely worth a shot and is best enjoyed with friends & family.

★★★½




 

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