While I support the idea of freedom of expression as guaranteed in the 1st amendment, there is value to the argument that if you tolerate everything, there is nothing you won’t accept. I am making it clear from the jump that I am no fan of Seth Rogen or his films. The last movie of his I enjoyed was This Is The End because of the meta way the film addressed what pieces of crap Rogen and all of this friends truly are. I noticed long ago that Rogen had become a one-trick pony. If you have seen one Rogen film, you have seen them all. Glorifying hardcore drug use, unnecessary swearing, homosexuality used as a punchline, male nudity, Christian bashing, and base-level social commentary from an intoxicated progressive slant. Use a dry erase marker for the names and you have the same movie copy and pasted every single time. Rogen’s latest production is honestly no different from the others, “Good Boys” will be all of those things and more but this time around, everything is done by children.
Good Boys is a film that takes pride in the fact that they have strong crude language, sexual content, drug and alcohol use all done by tweens, it’s even in the advertising. Now Good Boys is not the first or the last film to try to work this concept, the idea itself is not original. However, sitting in a theater and watching a bunch of elementary school-age kids talk about doing cocaine, playing with explicit sex toys, and swinging crotch first on a sex swing…as someone who doesn’t even have kids, I have to ask a couple of questions. First, is this really the direction we want to go down with entertainment?
Now I can already hear the people who will defend this film by saying things like:
“This is how kids are today.”
“Kids are more ‘mature’ than you give them credit for”
“Stop treating us like kids, we are tweens, we know how things work (direct quote from the film)”
There are a few ways to look at these arguments. First up: “This is how kids are today”. Is that a good thing? Is it a positive thing that kids in 2019 are exposed to sex, drugs, and crudeness in elementary school? And even if they are, is this something we should in encourage in society? Are 8-year-olds knowing how to do cocaine something that we should be giving a pass to or is this something that we should be working to fix? The dismissive nature of this statement implies that there is nothing that we can do, so we should just accept it.
Second, “Kids are more mature than you give them credit for.” Making the argument that children are more “mature and understanding” of sexual discussions is the exact argument that pedophiles make to justify their urges.
“Are you saying that Good Boys is endorsing pedophilia???”
Ask yourself this question, when you are sitting in the movie theater laughing your intoxicated ass off at a bunch of elementary school children swinging around on top of each other on a sex swing, ask yourself “is everyone who is watching this scene doing it for laughs?” Is everyone behind the scenes who are close to the children in question on the up and up? It is quite interesting that the same group of people who have no problem pointing out the history of sexual abuse of children in let’s say your local Catholic church seem to be conversely as silent about the history of the sexual abuse of children happening in Hollywood.
The entertainment industry has a deep-seated past and present with people using their power to pray on others sexually. If in the age of #MeToo where we have accepted the fact that guys like Harvey Weinstein abused their power to sexually assault adult women than why do we shy away from the reality that others have done the same to sexually abuse kids? Especially kids that are the same age as the ones starring in this film. We just had actress Bella Throne come out and admit she was sexually abused as a kid during her time working at Disney and the people that she worked with knew and did nothing. We have had high-profile cases such as Jeffrey Epstein, Jon Heely, Huston Huddleston, Joel Kramer, and others. These are fairly recent examples that don’t even scratch the surface of the overall and legendary problem in Hollywood so all I ask is before you quickly denounce these concerns, how confident are you that the people who watch things like this will have the same takeaway of humor that you have? Then ask yourself is there something more problematic here that you are not comfortable with?
Lastly, “Stop treating us like kids, we are tweens, we know how things work” The irony of using this statement in the advertising is that the joke of the film is these kids actually don’t know anything at all, so why are we entertaining this as a legitimate argument? How many children are seriously making this statement? Or are these the written words of a questionable 40-year-old Hollywood screenwriter/director who are making these claims on behalf of a child? Even if they weren’t, the answer to this statement is, no, you ARE children. If you are not old enough to have a Magazine subscription in your name, then you are not going to be treated as an adult, because you are not, you ARE a child. For the adults who fight against the notion at 12 years old you should be treated like a kid, why exactly are you fighting against this? What is the endgame of pretending that kids are not really kids anymore? That children should be treated like adults? The answer to that question may have nothing to do directly with this film, but with the overall agenda of people who seek to use children to normalize things that many would question.
Now if I am trying to get a large group of people to side with me on such positions as:
“I believe we should lower the voting age to 16“
“I believe we should teach masturbation to children as young as 11“
“I believe that at the age of 2, a child is old enough to decide his own gender“
“I believe that at the age of 5, a child should be able to choose his own gender, even if that means giving them life alternating hormones”
“I believe that by Grade 7, children should be learning about oral and anal sex in public schools”
“I believe that at the age of 9, it should be perfectly ok for your child to be a drag queen“
“I believe that at the age of 6, your daughter should be in a beauty pageant“
“I believe that your child actually enjoys the nakedness and kink that occurs at Pride parades”
Well, if you generally agree with most of the statements presented above, not only would you be more inclined to support the notion that kids shouldn’t be treated like kids, but for the sake of your ideology, you would need the majority of society to normalize that idea. You would need society to be swayed to a point where they believe a child wearing blackface is the most offensive thing in a film that also includes those same children putting their mouths on a used sex doll for laughs (yes, this actually happens in the film).
Is Seth Rogen’s ‘Good Boys’ Sexualizing Children? Well, if the picture above doesn’t make you uncomfortable, you will probably say no. Which brings us back to the original argument, if you tolerate everything, there is nothing you won’t accept. Maybe this film isn’t too far for you, I would like to think that they are many other people out there who don’t wish to know where is the line that some people will say, enough is enough.