Cottage Grove actor takes a punch a minute in 'Goon: Last of the Enforcers'
Let no one say that actor Seann William Scott can't take a punch.
"Goon: Last of the Enforcers," the sequel that stars Scott, is about 100 minutes long and I'd estimate that the Cottage Grove native takes an average of a punch per minute. I have seen "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" movies that weren't as bloody and brutal as "Goon," which features Scott as Doug Glatt, a loosely fictionalized version of pro hockey thug Doug Smith, who averaged nearly seven penalty minutes per game over the course of his career.
As in the first "Goon," Scott brings a disarming sweetness to a character who spends most of his time beating the puck out of people. Sporting a confusing hairline and many, many bruises, Scott depicts Glatt as a loving husband and a devoted friend who just happens to be good at smashing opponents' faces. And he has even more chances to do that in "Enforcer" because it tracks the rise of "Bruised and Battered" competitions, which are all about bloodshed on the ice. (We're told "the only rule is 'No hockey!' ")
Technically, he's the straight man in the movie, but Scott is consistently, weirdly hilarious. My favorite moment comes when Glatt's wife (played by Alison Pill) tells him, "You smell like hotdogs" and he replies, almost beatifically, "Thank you!" It's a performance full of deadpan non-sequiturs like that one, and Scott nails them, walking a delicate line between innocence and idiocy.
The movie deftly walks that same line, sometimes coming off like an adult "Mighty Ducks" (very adult — this is a seriously dirty movie) and sometimes like a ridiculous take on "The Karate Kid" (when Liev Schreiber pops up to school Glatt in mayhem-causing techniques).
The movie works better than any comedy with this many nosebleeds has a right to. Give credit to the actors, with Pill and — believe it or not — Elisha Cuthbert also giving fine performances. Schreiber's swearing is particularly inventive and blasphemous, but smart acting assures that, even when "Goon: Last of the Enforcers" is at its bluest, it still feels rooted in flesh and blood humanity.
"Goon: Last of the Enforcers'
• Directed by: Jay Baruchel
• Starring: Seann William Scott, Liev Schreiber, Wyatt Russell
• Rated R for brutal language and violence, and partial nudity
• Should you go? You don't need to like hockey to be amused by "Goon." ***