Few things are as bad as a movie that completely wastes a terrific premise, but “Buddy Games” is one of the absolute worst offenders in the history of cinema. This unconditionally awful, putrid movie is one that I’m angry I wasted my time watching. I kept waiting for it to get better and while I never gave up hope that the laughs would arrive, the movie gave up on me.
After a falling out years ago that involved a paintball gun and exposed (and exploded) testicles, six friends reunite to bring back an absurd mental and physical competition tradition they call the Buddy Games. The dynamics are different now, and the stakes are higher: the winner of this year’s games will not only win bragging rights, but will take home $150,000. It’s a terrific idea for a story, but nothing about it is executed well.
The movie isn’t original, and feels like a “The Do-Deca-Pentathlon” meets “Jackass” meets “Tag” copy cat. It’s a garbage rip-off of better adult friends playing games movies that themselves aren’t even that good to begin with, and some of the plot points and challenges are taken straight out of these other films.
Not only is it painfully unfunny, but it’s not even a good buddy movie. The characters are a bunch of losers who are as unlikable as they come. All of them are awful in their own way, especially the ringleader Bobfather (Josh Duhamel), his girlfriend Tiffany (Olivia Munn), the underdog Bender (Nick Swardson), and Shelly (Dan Bakkedahl), who can only be described as a deranged psychopath that nobody in their right minds would ever want to be within 10 feet of, much less be friends with.
The set-up is slow going and the momentum never picks up. It’s a shame to waste such a good cast with vomit-inducing jokes about semen cocktails and dance floor diarrhea. The “screenwriting” team (if you can call them writers) try to insert some warm-and-fuzzies near the end, but none of that works either. This laughless letdown is in the running for the worst movie of 2020.