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Dan Bernardi
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A simple, vicarious recreational experiment soon became an obsession they were happy to cultivate. Monitored by the Director and crew, I am severed from reality, strapped into a lab theater, and injected into countless cinematic simulations- “cims”. Fully absorbed for the duration of each run time, the sole mission is to report my findings from within the scenes. These reports are known as Total Review.[/intro-text]

– SIM #1002 – “EVERYBODY WANTS SOME!!” – 117 mins. – release: Apr. 15th, 2016 –

As they plug me into the simulator, I contemplate the cim’s origins. I am a fan of my mission director, Richard Linklater, who crafted some of the most realistic, reflective dramas and comedies of the past twenty five years. His Before Sunrise trilogy had me swooning as the third wheel in a lifelong romance. I nostalgically relived the twelve most awkward years of my life throughout the course of Boyhood. Dazed and Confused left me feeling high for weeks. When I heard that Linklater’s Everbody Wants Some!! is a spiritual sequel to Dazed, I was ready for some youthful fun. Then it starts.

I’m flashed back to 1980, Texas, sitting backseat in a rad Oldsmobile 442 with The Knack’s My Sharona blasting on the radio. Behind the wheel is Jake Bradford, the seemingly nice, quiet, boy-next-door type, and the cim’s main character. After a cruise through a college campus where I get my first yet brief chance to take in the glory of epic 1980 fashion, we arrive at the Baseball Houses. This is above and beyond your typical frat scenario. Two neighboring houses, rooming eight college ball players each- and everyone’s hoping to go all the way this year. Coach points out to us residents of the houses, there are two rules- no booze and no ladies upstairs. We’ll see how long that lasts.

I’m introduced to the team, driven by more testosterone than a herd of bull sharks. They’re often wild, sarcastic, and competitive, and I’m surprised at how unique and likeable they can be for a group of bro-athletes. There are too many to name. McReynolds is the cocky leader, “Raw Dog” Jay is the loose cannon, Willoughby is a stoner guru, and Finnegan, my favorite, is witty, charismatic, and as Jake puts it, the master of “fuck-withery”. The jokes fly, and I find myself laughing during the majority of my time spent with the boys, but no one is safe from “chumpification”, so watch your ass. My time is spent getting to know them and learning that even when we butt heads, a team sticks together.

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Baseball, our primary bond, is in the back of all of our minds. We’ve got a scrimmage coming up, but the season doesn’t kick off til spring, and class starts in three days. So what else is a gang of horny college guys to do with any down time? The party starts immediately. All the rules are broken. We indulge ourselves in alcohol, weed, hijinks, and the cim earns its name as every guy on the team looks to fulfill their quest for sex. This quest leads us to all corners of the campus. A country western ho-down, mosh pit fueled punk rager, an eccentric theater kid costume ball. We go to incredible lengths in search for the company of women, and even when it doesn’t pan out, we still have a total blast.

The cim ended abruptly. I lost all track of time. Everybody Wants Some!! pleasantly defied my high  expectations. I floated through, not realizing until the end that there were virtually no consequences for the team’s care-free behavior, no central conflict or antagonists to drive the story, and absolutely no major climax. It’s a classic Linklater slice-of-life, and I enjoyed every fleeting minute with my ensemble of new-found friends. Everybody Wants Some!! is a lively and hilarious retro throwback that reminds us we’re here for a good time, not a long time. Have some fun and crash the party.

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