Goon might not have the Warren Zevon-inspired pedigree of Kevin Smith’s upcoming two-part hockey dramedy Hit Somebody, but it will get the drop on Smith’s supposed final film when it’s released in February. Here Seann William Scott stars as Doug Glatt, a bouncer and minor-league hockey fan from a brainy family who fights so well that he gets a tryout with his favorite team. Jay Baruchel—who co-wrote the script with Seth Rogen’s usual writing partner Evan Goldberg, which in turn is based on a book by former minor-leaguer Doug Smith and Adam Frattasio—co-stars as the host of the web show that gets Glatt noticed. Liev Schreiber plays the aging, outgoing enforcer of the league, who somehow attempts to impart advice to Scott. Scott’s fellow American Pie veteran Eugene Levy and Scott Pilgrim’s Alison Pill also show up.
Scott looks lovably dimwitted in the trailer, unable to form a coherent comeback to any insult. And according to his coach, played by Sons Of Anarchy’s Kim Coates, he’s “not here to play hockey,” just to fight—suggesting that Goon could steal a lot of Hit Somebody’s thunder in what are basically two competing updates of Slap Shot. It’s too soon to call, obviously, but in Goon’s case there at least seems to be a sweet core beneath all the “69” and “cherry-popping” jokes.