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New old teenagers

Male oddballs, losers and underdogs have infiltrated mainstream movies.

By Francine Stock   June 2012

Time to grow up? Jordan Gelber and Donna Murphy in Dark Horse

In the 2008 comedy Step Brothers, oversized thirtysomething kids Will Ferrell and John C Reilly burst into the marital bedroom shared by their respective parents. Squirming with anticipation, they beg to turn their own twin beds into a bunk. Reluctant approval secured, they bound away.  Seconds and a sickening crash later, a distraught Reilly reappears, wailing: “Those bunk beds were a terrible idea. Why did you let us do it?”

Over the past decade, cinema screens have been overrun with such characters—adult males in various stages of arrested…

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