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This Review Reveals Minor Details About the Plot.

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Game Night (2018) on IMDb

Plot Overview

Game-winning handIt's Trivia Death Battle at the local pub. A good sport orders eight rounds of beer (“Who cares about winning? Let's get drunk!”) for his and his opposing team—by arrangement with the waiter his team's consist of just water. Max (Jason Bateman) and Annie (Rachel McAdams) simultaneously spout off the winning answer. Games like Pictionary, SCRABBLE and Charades form the foundation of their budding relation­ship. They get married (“I'm really happy for you guys.”)

Dr. Chin (Camille Chen) analyzes their fertility problem. Max's numbers are high enough, but his “motility is way below normal.” That could be caused by stress, which in turn could be caused by Max's long­standing sibling rivalry with his successful older brother Brooks (Kyle Chandler.)

Their game night friends include Ryan (Billy Magnussen) and his series of air-head dates who don't help his score any, but the last one Sarah (Sharon Horgan)—she's British—seems smart enough. And there's a black married couple Kevin (Lamorne Morris) and Michelle (Kylie Bunbury) who've been together since high school. Gary (Jesse Plemons) the divorced cop next door is pointedly not invited as it was his now ex-wife Debbie who was into the games, not Gary so much. And Brooks surprises them dropping in unexpectedly in his new Sting­ray and inviting them to his house for “a game night to remember.”

One Week Later. “We're taking it up a notch,” Brooks announces. “In the next hour someone in this room is going to be taken. You have to find him before he's murdered.” They play a drinking game as they await that event. There's a knock on the door, and “It looks like the game is afoot.” It's an “FBI Agent” (Jeffrey Wright) with folders containing the clues. As he's briefing them the door gets busted in the second time and three jacks appear who have their parts down pat; they cart off an extremely reluctant Brooks. The players remark that the FBI guy is really good at playing dead. Annie picks up Brooks's dropped weapon for a prop and they all dash off pursuing their respective leads.


The Apocrypha is part of the Catholic Bible, and the Wisdom books of the Apocrypha are accepted by the Protestants for edification purposes though they are not included in the canon. Among them is Eccles­ias­ticus, also known as The Wisdom of the Son of Sirach. A portion seems applicable here: (Sirach 25:7) “There be nine things which I have judged in mine heart to be happy, and the tenth I will utter with my tongue: A man that hath joy of his children; and he that liveth to see the fall of his enemy.” It would bring Max joy in this movie to be able to have a baby and to defeat his rival Brooks.

(Sirach 25:8) “Well is he that dwelleth with a wife of under­standing, and that hath not slipped with his tongue, and that hath not served a man more unworthy than him­self.” It is well that Max has an under­standing wife, and that he watches what he says, and that he doesn't knuckle under the unworthy outside players.

(Sirach 25:9) “Well is he that hath found prudence, and he that speaketh in the ears of them that will hear.” Max deals prudently with his gun­shot wound. He also negotiates well with the kidnappers.

cross crawl(Sirach 25:10) “O how great is he that findeth wisdom! yet is there none above him that feareth the Lord.” Max finds wisdom, and that is great. The ones who take the cake, however, are the "kidnappers" cowering in fear under a gun with live bullets in it and having assumed "the child" position—it's a yoga posture.

(Sirach 25:11) “But the love of the Lord passeth all things for illumination: he that holdeth it, whereto shall he be likened?” The lover of the Lord who “passeth all things for illumination” could be likened to the originator, i.e. Sherlock Holmes, of the saying used in this movie, “the game is afoot,” or else to the knowing doctor who correctly interprets test results.

(Sirach 25:12) “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of his love: and faith is the beginning of cleaving unto him.” Fear, love, faith, and cleaving would be manifested in the list of those showing up involved in WITSEC, the witness protection program. They'd have the fear of God instilled in them to enter it in the first place, love of their families whom they're protecting as well, faith in the marshals (and ultimately in God) to protect them, and cleaving to the sensible rules to make it work.

(Sirach 25:13) “[Give me] any plague, but the plague of the heart: and any wickedness, but the wickedness of a woman:” Gary was broken hearted and love­sick after his break­up with Debbie who'd evidently done him wrong.

(Sirach 25:14) “And [Give me] any affliction, but the affliction from them that hate me: and any revenge, but the revenge of enemies.” Brooks was into some nasty smuggling business and had made some powerful enemies who were out for his blood.

(Sirach 25:15) “There is no head above the head of a serpent; and there is no wrath above the wrath of an enemy.” The very low heads in this movie were: the dog lapping blood, the Sting­ray's namesake animal settled on the bottom, and the get­away plane nose-down. The angry criminals stood out above all those low profiles.

(Sirach 25:16–19) “I had rather dwell with a lion and a dragon, than to keep house with a wicked woman. The wickedness of a woman changeth her face, and darkeneth her countenance like sack­cloth. Her husband shall sit among his neighbours; and when he heareth it shall sigh bitterly. All wickedness is but little to the wickedness of a woman: let the portion of a sinner fall upon her.” Kevin could not focus on the real dangers around him for dwelling on his cheating wife. She'd exposed her perfidy by taking a drink in the game: “Never have I ever—” Her husband just fumed at hearing this. But she gets her come­up­pance by the end of the movie.

(Sirach 25:20) “As the climbing up a sandy way is to the feet of the aged, so is a wife full of words to a quiet man.” Tongue-tied Ryan kept getting upstaged by his ditsy dates until he found a more taciturn one.

(Sirach 25:21) “Stumble not at the beauty of a woman, and desire her not for pleasure.” Ryan's problem was he kept dating models to bolster his flagging self-esteem, which wasn't helping him win games, or the game of life for that matter.

Production Values

This gonzo comedy, “” was directed by John Francis Daley and Jona­than Gold­stein. It was written by Mark Perez. It stars Jason Bateman, Rachel McAdams, and Kyle Chandler. Bateman and McAdams have great chemistry together, as well all the actors for that matter. Jesse Plemons is a scream playing the tip of a silent iceberg.

MPAA rated it R for language, sexual references and some violence. Composer Cliff Martinez's beat-heavy score set a palp­able mood. It was tightly and creatively plotted.

Review Conclusion w/ Christian Recommendation

This was a very engaging and funny movie, full of surprises and miscues. Don't take a break and miss any of it, because the plot will make changes that can throw you if you doze off—unlikely. Be sure to stay for the post-credits scene, too.

Movie Ratings

Action factor: Edge of your seat action-packed. Suitability For Children: Not Suitable for Children of Any Age. Special effects: Well done special effects. Video Occasion: Fit For a Friday Evening. Suspense: Keeps you on the edge of your seat. Overall product rating: Four stars out of five.

Works Cited

Apocryphal scripture taken from The Septuagint with Apocrypha: Greek and English. U.S.A.: Hendrick­son Pub. Originally published by Samuel Bagster & Sons, Ltd., London, 1851. Print, WEB (for verse 12).