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The Benchwarmers Review

Movies.com Critics

1.0

Dave White Profile

… Dullsville. Read full review

Other Critics provided by Metacritic.com

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 2.0
    25

    out of 100

    Metascore®
    Generally unfavorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 30

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Frank Scheck

    You have to credit the filmmakers for at least acknowledging their level of dreck during the final credits, when Lovitz rhetorically asks, "This was a complete waste of time, wasn't it?"

    Read Full Review

  • 67

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    This morphing of "The Bad News Bears" and a "Three Stooges" episode parades its dumbness with such zip that it almost passes for clever.

    Read Full Review

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 13+

Dreadful sports comedy is a waste of time.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that The Benchwarmers is premised on adult men behaving like angry children. The movie features repeated adolescent jokes. There's some profanity and many sexual references. An adult eats his nose boogers and a bug; bullies fart on target-boys; agoraphobic character mocked repeatedly for being pale (afraid of the sun, whiny, and fearful); joke about urine looking like "apple juice"; one boy spits when he talks (Schneider imitates, supposedly to make boy feel less strange, but mostly to prolong a feeble joke); one coach appears "gay," as if this undermines his macho behavior. The games include slapstick, hard-thwacking violence: bats hit bodies, heads, and squirrels in a tree (sending them flying apparently to their deaths); balls hit bodies, bare hands, and heads.

  • Families can talk about the concept of revenge: Is it possible to feel better if you make other people feel badly?
  • How do the Benchwarmers speak for all self-claimed nerds who feel bullied?
  • How does apologizing make Gus feel better than beating all the kids' teams?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Grown-up nerds try to avenge their childhood traumas by taunting children and beating them in baseball games; adults bully children; jokes about agoraphobic character; jokes about small people ("midget-boy," "Yoda"); puking; farting; knocking down mailboxes as "batting practice" (this ordained by Reggie Jackson).

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: Violence used in the service of sophomoric humor: holding a kid to the ground and farting in his face; baseballs hit chests, heads, crotches, and a bug (Clark eats the splatted dead bug); "ringer" stands on Gus' pitching hand and grinds it with his cleats (we see cuts and bruises on it after); rock hits a young man's crotch; several instances of "t---y twisting"; thrown baseball bats hit players/crowd members, cars, squirrels; a lawnmower runs over a dog (and cuts off fur); eggs hit players.

  • sex false3

    Sex: Pre-adolescent sexual jokes (titillation over "lesbians," pulling down pants to make baseball players trip); Richie wears a T-shirt that reads: "Everyone loves an Asian boy"; Gus gets in the shower with wife to pee: viewers hear it from offscreen and she expresses disgust; married couple is "trying to get pregnant," and she mentions her ovulation cycle several times; some concepts that might need explaining for younger viewers ("hermaphrodite," effects of steroids (they "make your peepee smaller," a blowup doll); gay jokes; when one character hears how a woman became pregnant, he squirts sunblock from a container to suggest ejaculation.

  • language false3

    Language: Frequent obnoxious language, some tiresome ("ass," "s--t," "d--k"), some juvenile ("frickin' ," "you suck," "shut up," "retard!," "Bros before hos," "pig," "spaz," "stinkweeds," "eat me," etc.), some sexed/gendered/homophobic ("t---y twisters," "three muskequeers," "homo," "bitch," "douche-bags."

  • consumerism false4

    Consumerism: AOL, Diet Pepsi, Pizza Hut, Skittles, Star Wars figures, Night Rider, Batman, Netzero, Ms. Pacman, Gatorade, PlayStation, Miata (car), Mac laptops.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false2

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Unlit cigar; "ringer" drinks beer and tequila and smokes cigarettes.

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