REVIEW: “Tag”

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REVIEW: “Tag”

Jonathan Montague, Staff Writer

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These days, if a movie is not a sequel or a remake, then it probably has a source material of some kind. That source can be a TV show, a novel/book series or even real-life events. The latest in the latter category is Tag, a star-studded ensemble comedy based on a Wall Street Journal article from 2013 about the world’s longest-running iteration of the classic children’s game. Will this movie make adults feel like kids again?

The film follows five middle-aged friends who have been playing the same game of tag every May for the last 30 years. One of them, Jerry, has never been caught and is rumored to be retiring from the game after his wedding at the end of this May. Learning this, Hoagie, Chilli, Callaghan and Sable return home and band together to finally catch Jerry at his most vulnerable ever.

The plot delivers exactly what you want: smart comedy and outrageous hijinks! None of the comedy feels forced or awkward, and if one doesn’t land, there are ten more coming up that will. They remain as loyal to the real events as they narratively can while making everything bigger and more insane than anyone could have thought possible. It’s like if Kevin McCallister and his best friends grew up. They play up how wacky their premise is and hold nothing back whatsoever.

What makes the story work, of course, is the electric chemistry of this cast. The comradery and history of these characters gush from the screen and make each and every joke hit home. There is also a lot of heart to this movie, with the main theme revolving around friendship and what keeps friends together. As someone who is experiencing that drifting phenomenon and is terrible at keeping in touch, I can relate.

This cast is simply excellent. Everyone gets a chance to shine and polish off their comedic chops. Each brings their own flavor to the table, including personal favorites Jeremy Renner and Isla Fisher.

The chase sequences are incredibly creative and embrace the playful tone this movie is going for. Furthermore, this soundtrack might win “Best of the Year,” picking some really great joints to kick it to. That’s not to undermine the score, which is also enjoyable.

Tag is just the bucket laughs that this summer needed, with a great message and an even greater cast. I recommend everyone to see this movie as soon as they can. This movie certainly is “it!”