Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Everybody Want Some!!

Written and directed by Richard Linklater, Everybody Want Some!! is the story of a young baseball pitcher who goes to a college in Texas as he deals with the world of debauchery as well as trying to make it in the college leagues as it is told in the span of a weekend before the first day of college. The film is considered a spiritual sequel to 1993’s Dazed and Confused as it’s set in 1980 where a young man deals with being in college as well as looking at what is ahead for his life. Starring Blake Jenner, Zoey Deutch, Will Brittain, Ryan Guzman, Tyler Hoechlin, Glen Powell, and Wyatt Russell. Everybody Want Some!! is a wild yet sensational film from Richard Linklater.

Set in the span of an entire weekend before the first day of college, a young baseball pitcher arrives at his new home where he deals with his new surroundings as well as his teammates that include three other freshmen and two new transfers as they party and do all sorts of crazy shit. It is a film with a simple story as this freshman pitcher not only adjusts to his new surroundings but also realize what he has to do to survive and live up to the expectations of being part of the team. Richard Linklater’s screenplay doesn’t carry much of a plot but it does have characters that are all very interesting in their own unique way. Sure, they drink beer and smoke some weed while going to clubs and meet women yet they’re not the typical jocks. They really care about playing baseball and do good while being aware that not everyone will go to the majors. At the same time, they’re just trying to have fun and live the moment though not everything is great as there’s a few that would try to ruin things.

Linklater’s direction is quite simple in terms of the compositions he creates while re-creating a period in time that feels new but also bear elements of the previous decade. Shot largely in various locations in Texas including Austin and Weimar, the film does have a feel that plays into the many different world that the state offers where the guys would go to a disco one day and then a country bar the next day. There’s also an encounter with the punk subculture as well as the world of the theater kids. Linklater’s usage of the wide and medium shots doesn’t just play into this diverse environment but also in the way they deal with baseball practice and training. Linklater also maintains an intimacy as it relates to the guys just hanging out and playing games where the usage of close-ups and medium shots show something that is just extraordinary in how ordinary things can be. Even as it maintains something lively in the parties and in the game while taking the first steps into the world that is college. Overall, Linklater creates a sensational yet fun film about a freshman and his first weekend of college life.

Cinematographer Shane F. Kelly does excellent work with the film‘s cinematography from the usage of lights and moods for much of the film‘s interiors and some of the nighttime scenes as well as the naturalistic look for the scenes set in the day. Editor Sandra Adair does amazing work with the editing with its usage of jump-cuts and other rhythmic cuts as well as an inspired usage of the split-screen format. Production designer Bruce Curtis, with set decorator Gabriella Villarreal and art director Rodney Becker, does fantastic work with the look of the homes the team lives in as well as the clubs they go to all over Texas to play into the diverse world of the state. Costume designer Kari Perkins does nice work with the costumes as it plays into that transition from 70s to 80s in terms of style as well the different kind of looks and clothes the characters would wear for the different subcultures they would encounter.

Visual effects artist Chas Naylor does terrific work with some of the minimal visual effects as it‘s mainly bits of set-dressing as well as key moment in how a baseball is split in two by an axe. Sound editor Tom Hammond does superb work with the sound as it captures the raucous nature of the parties as well as some of the quieter moments to play into some of the natural sounds. Music supervisors Meghan Currier and Randall Poster create a phenomenal soundtrack that plays into the world of 70s/early 80s music from acts like Blondie, the Cars, the Knack, Gary Numan, Kool and the Gang, Van Halen, Joe Walsh, ZZ Top, Brian Eno, Pink Floyd, the Sugarhill Gang, John Stewart with Stevie Nicks, Parliament, Peaches & Herb, Frank Zappa, Donna Summer, Queen, Hot Chocolate, Stiff Little Fingers, Patti Smith, Pat Benatar, Devo, Eddie Money, M, and Foreigner.

The casting by Justine Arteta, Vicky Boone, and Kim Davis-Wagner is great as it features some notable small roles from Jonathan Breck as the baseball coach, Michael Monsour as a former teammate of Jake in Justin who has become a punk, Forrest Vickery as a big teammate in Coma, Austin Amelio as a risk-taking teammate in Nesbit, Tanner Kalina as a freshman player who tries to find his footing in Alex Brumley, Temple Baker as another freshman in Tyrone Plummer who befriends Jake, J. Quinton Johnson as the African-American player Dale Douglas who helps the new guys what to do, and Juston Street as a new transfer from Detroit named Jay Niles who has a lot of attitude and is very selfish. Will Brittain is superb as a freshman pitcher in Billy “Beuter” Autrey who gets a nickname because of his accent as he would also look like a cowboy.

Ryan Guzman is terrific as the ladies man Kenny who does whatever he can to look good and be with the chicks as well as be a very loyal player. Tyler Hoechlin is excellent as the team leader Glen McReynolds as a veteran player who doesn’t like the freshmen as a way for them to gain his respect yet is someone that is willing to help them in their importance of teamwork. Wyatt Russell is fantastic as the stoner player Charlie Willoughby as this eccentric guy that everyone likes as well as be a guy who has a great obsession with The Twilight Zone. Zoey Deutch is amazing as Beverly as a performance arts student who befriends Jake as she is wary of what he is but realizes that he is just a nice guy. Blake Jenner is brilliant as Jake as the freshman pitcher who arrives at the school as he tries to find his footing while embracing some of the things that had to be done as it’s just a laid-back performance. Finally, there’s Glen Powell in an incredible performance as Finnegan as this veteran player who is the coolest and funniest motherfucker of the team while trying to help the new guys in how to flirt with chicks as he’s just a guy that is cool as well as be open to anything that he encounters.

Everybody Wants Some!! is a remarkable film from Richard Linklater. Featuring a great cast, a compelling premise, and an awesome soundtrack as it’s a film about guys having a good time while living in the moment before they become adults. Even as it doesn’t take itself seriously while daring to ask some questions about life and the world of baseball. In the end, Everybody Wants Some!! is a phenomenal film from Richard Linklater.

Richard Linklater Films: It's Impossible to Learn to Plow by Reading Books - Slacker - Dazed and Confused - Before Sunrise - subUrbia - The Newton Boys - Waking Life - Tape - School of Rock - Before Sunset - Bad News Bears (2005 film - A Scanner Darkly - Fast Food Nation - Me and Orson Welles - Bernie - Before Midnight - Boyhood - The Auteurs #57: Richard Linklater Pt. 1 - Pt. 2

© thevoid99 2016


Zach Murphy said...

I'm glad you liked Everybody Wants Some!! It's one of those films that I enjoyed but wasn't blown away by at first, but the more I've thought about it, the higher it's risen in my favorites of the year list.

Great review.

- Zach

thevoid99 said...

I really enjoyed it as it's really a fun film that isn't afraid to be silly while not taking itself too seriously. Plus, the guys are just cool.

Anonymous said...

You probably can guess that I was bored stiff by it. Like, wishing I could fall asleep just to pass the time. This one didn't do anything for me at all.

thevoid99 said...

@assholeswatchingmovies.com-I can understand why it didn't work as it is more in line with his experimental features that aren't driven by plot.

Kevin Powers said...

I loved this movie. At first, I thought it was a throwaway, but then it really turned on and just charmed me. I want to hang out with these dudes all the time. Actually, i used to hang out with these guys. I was sort of one of these guys. Linklater really knows how to nail down characters through natural dialogue...as it should be. Willoughby explaining that Pink Floyd record stoned...that is as true to life as anything else I've seen this year. Great review!

Brittani Burnham said...

We just got this from Netflix (my husand threw it in) I'm still on the fence about it, but I'll try to enjoy it. Great review!

thevoid99 said...

@Kevin-That is part of Linklater's gift as a filmmaker. He tries to make it as real as it could where you could relate to these characters or know something about it and it does feel very authentic which is part of what I think makes Linklater so revered as a filmmaker.

@Brittani-It's not like some of his recent films as it's really more of a bro movie but I'm sure you might find something that is funny. At least they treat the women more kindly than most films.

Unknown said...

This film crept up on me. At first, I was thinking, why should I care about these assholes but as the film went on, Linklater brilliant and subtly humanized these guys and really got you to care about them or, at the very least, got you to understand where they were coming from. The big party they all go to at the end was fantastic in how Linklater showed these guys being taken out of their comfort zone and how they reacted to it. Great stuff.

thevoid99 said...

@J.D. Lafrance-A lesser filmmaker would just create something where you don't give a shit about these guys or be aghast by the misogyny that happens. Linklater doesn't do anything of that and thank goodness because he actually shows guys as just humans who want to have a good time and be open to new things while being nice to the women and not be afraid of being dominated by them. That is cool.

Khalid said...

This was Linklater's most laid back film in quite some time for me. Its fun, the characters are relatable and a really great hangout movie as well, like its spiritual predecessor Dazed and Confused. Nice review.

thevoid99 said...

@Khalid-The marketing, like the marketing in Dazed & Confused, made it look like another party movie but both films definitely subvert those ideas and show us real people that are just cool. I could watch another film with those guys because they were fun and they were respectful as well as probably being one hell of a baseball team.