Movie Review: “Free Guy” breathes life into video games


Courtesy 20th Century Fox

Guy (Ryan Reynolds) and Buddy (Lil Rel Howery) are non-playable characters in a video game in “Free Guy.”

Alexander Cespedes, Pepper Bough Staff Writer

“Free Guy” is a breath of fresh air.

It is a hilariously original idea where a video game N.P.C. (Non-playable character) comes to life and transforms into an AI (artificial intelligence).

“Free Guy” stars Ryan Reynolds as Guy, a simple fella who does what average white guys do. He wakes up, wears the same thing every day, and hangs out with his buddy, whose name is actually Buddy.

Buddy is played by Lil Rel Howery, and he’s the best character in the movie.

Every day, Guy and Buddy go to work at the bank in “Free City,” where Guy is a bank teller and Buddy the security guard. And every day they have to deal with video game chaos when the bank gets robbed by gamers.

This goes on, day after day, until Guy meets Molotov Girl (Jodie Comer). Seeing her changes something in Guy’s programming code. Then he finds a cool pair of sunglasses all the gamers are using, and when he puts them on he sees a whole different world—one full of the chaos that all the real gamers see.

Like “The Lego Movie,” “Free Guy” is a family-friendly game, mixed with the mature nature of the “Grand Theft Auto” video game franchise.

And like “The Lego Movie,” “Free Guy” also spends time in the real world. Back in the real world we learn that Molotov Girl is a programmer named Millie. She and her co-worker Keys (Joe Keery) wrote the code for a game that was stolen by the movie’s villain, Antwan (Taika Waititi), who used it to make “Free City,” where Guy lives.

Millie and Keys make an agreement with Guy to help prove that Antwan stole their code. Surprisingly, Guy starts “leveling up” the more he becomes the good guy.

When I saw all the trailers and the posters, I thought I was doomed to watch some mediocre run-of-the-mill kids’ movie. However, I was blown away by “Free Guy’s” relatable, mature jokes. It is not just for kids.

It also features cameos from a bunch of YouTubers and notable streamers, like jacksepticeye, Pokimane, DanTDM, Ninja, and LazarBeam. One of the reasons I decided to watch the movie is because I wanted to know what kind of role each of them would do. They play a big part in the movie by bringing attention to Guy.

“Free Guy” is one of the best movies of the year.


“Free Guy” is currently in theaters.