Boyhood is the 91st episode of Screen Junkies comedy series Honest Trailers. It was written by Spencer Gilbert, Dan Murrell and Andy Signore. It parodies the 2014 Richard Linklater drama film Boyhood. It was published on Feb 10 2015, to coincide with the Academy Awards show. It is 2 minutes 53 seconds long. It has been viewed over 4.3 million times.
Rather than the usual spoken narration, it features on-screen text interspersed with clips from the film while a parody of the Family of the Year song "Hero," performed by Sean Motley, plays in the background, mimicking the format of the film's actual trailer. This video is a musical episode of Honest Trailers.
"The most ambitious gimmick in movie history." ~ Honest Trailers- Boyhood
In 2002, Richard Linklater thought up the most ambitious gimmick in movie history, forcing one six-year-old to film the twelve most awkward years of his life, which, if he had backed out at any point, would have f**ked up everything. It's a beautiful film, but honestly...if you took the same script and shot it over a few months, it would suck.
Watch the same group of actors grow together over a decade...like the Harry Potter franchise, but without a plot, or magic, or fun.
Prepare to be manipulated by nostalgia. Hey, remember when Wii Sports was a big deal; or when you had that violently drunk stepfather; or that time your mom randomly told a contractor to go back to school, which led to him getting a college degree and running a restaurant?
"There has simply never been anything like this movie." -- Logan Hill, Rolling Stone
"It's really good, but Whiplash is better." -- @AngeloKatrantz
"You can't deny that it's a gimmick that works." -- @GraemeHarwell
"Not enough boobs." -- @PotheJedi
12 Years a Boy
Jon Bailey: Wait, it's over? Aw, man. I still get paid for this one, though, right?
(sung to the tune of "Hero")
Sean Motley: Watch him grow/From a cute kid to an emo./He just kinda walks around and/Never really does anything else./And there she goes,/Dating a string of drunk a-holes./Coulda saved a lotta trouble/By choosing her ex; he wasn't that bad.
- The Boyhood Honest Trailer was notable for receiving a copyright strike from the film studio (possibly by Universal Pictures, NBCUniversal, or Comcast) and being temporarily blocked. This is unusual, as film studios usually appreciate Honest Trailers because they are giving their movies free publicity and exposure.
- As revealed in the Honest Trailers Commentary for Aladdin (2019), head writer Spencer Gilbert originally wrote a conventional Honest Trailer script for this movie and narrator Jon Bailey recorded narration for it. However, the production team decided that Bailey's parody voiceover didn't work for this genre of film - even after he tried changing the style of his narration.
- The Honest Trailer ends with an on-screen appearance by regular narrator Jon Bailey, who expresses dismay at not providing any voice-over narration, then asks whether he will still be paid regardless.
- Screen Junkies have never repeated the technique of using on-screen text in place of spoken narration.
- Boyhood was the front-runner to win the Academy Award for Best Picture. However, it lost to Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance).
- Screen Junkies have produced Honest Trailers for several other drama films including The Revenant, Forrest Gump, Gladiator, Titanic and The Social Network. Screen Junkies also regularly put out Honest Trailers for Academy Award Nominated films, for example, Oscars 2016, Oscars 2017, Oscars 2018 and Oscars 2019.
- Jon Bailey also appears onscreen in Divergent, Insurgent and Mad Max: Fury Road.
- An Honest Trailer Commentary for this episode was recorded and was available on the Screen Junkies Plus until the website/app was discontinued. Screen Junkies don't currently have any way of releasing the video.
Honest Trailers - Boyhood has a 93.8% approval rating from YouTube viewers. Hypable called the Honest Trailer "undeniably hilarious" and highlighted the line from the parody song “He just kinda walks around and never really does anything else." Hypable also appreciated Screen Junkies' analogy of "Harry Potter without the magic." Time wrotethat "the funniest part of this trailer, though, is the new version of the song “Hero” that was featured in the original trailer." Slash Film agreed, saying the parody song was "pretty funny."
IndieWire noted that the Honest Trailer is "filled with biting humor, a refreshing change of pace given the gluttonous volume of Boyhood-related thinkpieces that have made the rounds throughout awards season. And isn’t a little playful mockery the greatest form of affection, anyway? Find out which critic derided the film for the totally-legitimate reason 'not enough boobs,' and take in some admittedly-on-point observations."
Production credits Edit
Voiceover Narration by Jon Bailey
Original music and vocals by Sean Motley
Edited by Dan Murrell
- This Honest Boyhood Trailer Will Make You Laugh No Matter How Much You Loved the Movie - Time article
- The Honest Trailer For ‘Boyhood’ Really Puts All Your Deep Feels In Perspective - Junkee article
- Honest Trailer for ‘Boyhood’: It’s ‘Harry Potter without magic’ - Hypable article
- ‘Boyhood’ Honest Trailer Is Not a Fan of the Best Picture Contender - Slash Film article
- "The most ambitious gimmick in movie history": Boyhood gets Honest Trailer - Digital Spy article
- Watch: Brilliant ‘Boyhood’ Honest Trailer Doesn’t Hold Back in Mocking the Year’s Best-Reviewed Film - Indie Wire article
- Honest Trailer for BOYHOOD - Geek Tyrant article