Edit ModuleShow Tags

Movie Review: Horrible Bosses

Films opening this weekend:
Beginners - Eastern Hills Dipson; North Park Dipson
Gekijouban Trigun: Badlands Rumble - select days at The Screening Room - REVIEW
Horrible Bosses - Maple Ridge; McKinley Mall Dipson; Elmwood, Transit, Galleria, Hollywood Regals; Flix; Transit Drive-In
Zookeeper - Maple Ridge; Market Arcade; Elmwood, Transit, Galleria, Hollywood, Quaker Regals; Flix; Transit Drive-In - REVIEW

I had such high hopes. Between Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis, and Charlie Day as the leads; Kevin Spacey, Colin Farrell, and Jennifer Aniston the supporters; and Jamie Foxx as the comedy’s comic relief, how could it have gone wrong?

It must have been the writing. The trio who tackled this tale of white surburban wage slaves who are driven to kill the three worst bosses possible ultimately fell prey to typecasting. Bateman is Michael Bluth, his one authoritative “shut it down” straight from the annals of Arrested Development; Sudeikis is the same crassly confident womanizer we saw this year in Hall Pass; and Day is our loveable Charlie from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.

And while I love each in their respective worlds, seeing them do the same schtick in Horrible Bosses is really exhausting.

It’s a shame, too, because there are a few big laughs and a couple unforgettable supporting performances. And the premise is gold. Like any stereotypical thirty-somethings without a clue as to how crime works on the streets, the trio of would-be boss murderers check Craigslist for hitmen. The filmmakers could have mined this search for more comic possibilities, but instead the three decide to do the deeds themselves. They’ve seen Law & Order.

And then we have the victims. Aniston’s Dr. Julia Harris has her way with Day’s Dale, who is all too vulnerable to sexual harassment charges. Spacey’s Dave Harken is the biggest ass of the three employers. And Farrell’s character is completely out of his mind. There is a rich laundry list of comedic ticks, but the film gets bogged down in finding the easy laughs with each.

In other words, if you’re like me and are sorely disappointed in the wasted potential of a great cast and premise, just wait for the outtakes. They’re our reward from director Seth Gordon for wading through the rest.

Horrible Bosses 6/10 | ★ ★ ½

[1] (L-R) JASON BATEMAN as Nick, JASON SUDEIKIS as Kurt, CHARLIE DAY as Dale and JAMIE FOXX as MF Jones in New Line Cinema's comedy "HORRIBLE BOSSES," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. Photo by John P. Johnson
[2] COLIN FARRELL as Pellit Jr. in New Line Cinema's comedy "HORRIBLE BOSSES," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. Photo by John P. Johnson

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Recommended Reads

  1. Onstage / TEN QUESTIONS FOR Ellen Horst
    Grandma Kurnitz in LOST IN YONKERS at Desiderio’s Dinner Theatre
  2. TIFF19 is one day away! Some final thoughts
  3. TIFF19: Ranking this year’s films...
    ...and a People’s Choice prediction
  4. Quick 6 / HAIRSPRAY
    Six interesting tidbits about the hit show

Add your comment: