Goon (2011)

(On Cable TV, August 2013) What could be more Canadian than a comedy about hockey? Here, Seann William Scott turns in one of his best performances as Doug, a somewhat dim-witted bouncer who unexpectedly proves to be a more-than-competent hockey enforcer.  The role of goons in hockey isn’t glamorous –essentially, they’re there to protect more talented players or to target opposing players–, making Goon’s frequently sweet-natured off-ice atmosphere seem all the more remarkable.  While the film doesn’t shy away from bloody violence, Scott’s performance as Doug (a really nice guy who just happens to be good at fighting) is enough to balance the excessively profane comedy most frequently mouthed by co-writer Jay Baruchel.  Goon is relatively well-shot, decently scripted (especially in the details) and benefits greatly from Liev Shreiber’s late-film appearance as a veteran goon.  While the ending is abrupt, the romance less than convincing and some of the profanity/gore is excessive, Goon remains a bit of a pleasant surprise, and something that Canadians won’t be too embarrassed about.

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