Aaaand, here walks in Everybody Wants Some!! (the inclusion of the exclamation points is very important). Entering the club with a confident swagger and beer in hand, Everybody Wants Some!! is a spiritual sequel that surpasses the holy, beloved justice of Dazed and Confused. Don’t get me wrong: I love the IDGAF, last day of school romp that is Dazed and Confused, but Everybody Wants Some!! is a stunning college party successor that evokes the same feelings as it’s origin and more. It’s all the ceremony of getting laid with no repercussions- and why should there be any?
On the way to happy hour at the regular Jolly Fox bar, brand new university baseball recruit Jake (Blake Jenner) sits smushed between his teammates in a shiny silver Chevy. Ladies man and upperclassman Finnegan (the *amazing* Glen Powell) sits up front and pulls over to flirt with some freshmen females moving in, until one of the girls utters “I like the quiet guy in the backseat,” eyeing Jake’s clueless face. The interaction is sexy, cheeky, exciting, adventurous: it’s a representation of all college has to offer, in just a wink from a hot brunette.
And that’s all college and Everybody Wants Some!! is about really- the conquest of “getting some” while we’re still young and unhinged. The baseball team boys travel from disco to rodeo, underground punk show to muddy jock party to theatre kids costume party, all with the goal of not going to bed alone at night. It’s a mindless concept that some audiences have criticized, saying the “plot” feels “airheaded,” but the sheer glee of such an animalistic concept in a college setting surrounded by Joni Mitchell posters and fridges scarce of everything but beer is enough to make the movie feel like a true escape-from-reality experience. With every actor being their absolute best, the infectious 80s music, and all the outfits ranging from male crop-tops to cheesy disco shirts your dad now hides in the back of his closet, Everybody Wants Some!! welcomes you back to the glory days of being on the baseball team for just a couple hours. Even as a current college student who’s living the time of her life as we speak, it’s inexplicably fun to watch director Richard Linklater exactly pinpoint the college atmosphere down to the 15-second bong hits.
With Boyhood and the Before series, I would always summarize Linklater’s filmography to being about human growth, but I’ve realized his movies are more than just that. Linklater’s career is about living- with no rules in Dazed and Confused, with love in the Before series, and in the moment with Everybody Wants Some!!. Never is there any thought of the past or future in Everybody Wants Some!!- only Linklater’s ticking clock that occasionally pops up with a countdown ‘til the first day of classes, which is more of a plot device than anything else really- and it’s absolutely freeing from the weight we get caught up with in our day-to-day lives. And it’s also what makes Everybody Wants Some!! so fitting as a spiritual sequel- it’s a chance to escape all preconceived notions and pretend like you were/are actually cool in college. Everybody’s welcome here and *cue the Van Halen song* everybody wants some…!!