Cinematic Releases: Tag (2018) - Reviewed

Childhood friendships that last into adult are a hard thing to maintain. Time, distance, and personalities all conspire together to separate you from your OG crew of friends. You don’t intend on it happening but it usually does happen eventually. You can slow down the inevitability of time forcing you to not be as close as you were with your old friends. You grow apart and you make new adult friends who don’t know every waking embarrassment from your adolescent years. It’s happened to me with some friends and I am sure it has happened to you. But if you’re lucky enough, you might just end up getting a crew who sticks with you through thick and thin. You’d probably end up with a group of friends similar to the ones featured in Tag.

Based on a true story, Tag is the story of a group of friends who are dedicated to keeping their friendship alive the only way they know how. For one month every year, five highly competitive friends hit the ground running in a no-holds-barred game of tag they've been playing since the first grade--risking their necks, their jobs and their relationships to take each other down with the epic battle cry "You're It!" This year, the game coincides with the wedding of their only undefeated player, which should finally make him an easy target. But he knows they're coming... and he's ready. And he’s not going to give up his title without a fight.

Directed by first time feature director Jeff Tomsic, Tag is a fun yet unremarkable addition to the comedic man-child canon of the 21st century. While it doesn’t reinvent the comedic wheel, I found the film to be pretty hilarious and heartfelt. This film has a murderers row of comedic talent that plays well off of each other. They feel like a real group of friends. Everybody in the film gets their moment to shine, with Jeremy Renner, Isla Fisher, and Hannibal Buress being the standouts in my eyes.

Does every aspect of the film work? No. Some of the jokes are a little misguided and weird but it’ll then do something that makes up for it. This film felt like a warm hug, watching a future version of my friends doing stupid shenanigans together. It’s not the smartest or funniest movie I’ve seen but this is one that really does a good job of capturing long-term friendships in a way that was real. I could see my friends doing this kind of stuff. You get a strong sense that the entire cast had a blast making this film and it shows. The audience I saw this with and myself both had a good time watching this. I am sure you will too. 

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-Liam S. O'Connor