Starring: Jason Bateman, Charlie Day, Jason Sudeikis, Jennifer Aniston, Jamie Foxx, Chris Pine, Christoph Waltz
Written for the screen by: Sean Anders & John Morris
Directed by: Sean Anders
Metacritic Score: 40
IMDb Score: 6.4
Rated R for strong crude sexual content and language throughout
No matter how awful or average a movie is, if it makes boat loads of cash, chances are there will be a sequel. Look no further than Horrible Bosses 2, the sequel to the average but popular comedy that stars the same three actors and appearances from the “Horrible Bosses” from the first film.
And yet, even though the first film was okay, it had some shining moments (Kevin Spacey and Colin Farrell being one of them). The sequel, however, doesn’t take anything good from the first and emphasizes on the less interesting aspects of the last movie (the caper part). Sounds promising!
Nick (Bateman), Kurt (Sudeikis) and Dale (Day) decide to become their own bosses by creating a product and mass producing it. However, they get fleeced by their initial investor (Waltz) and his son (Pine) and are on the hook for a half of a million dollars in a loan. In a last desperate attempt, they decide to kidnap the son and ransom him over to the father for the amount of the loan.
Another sequel, another water downed product. Horrible Bosses 2 essentially takes the first movie and just doubles up on the concept, only it also doubles down on the lesser aspects of the first film. Of course, you can’t have the film with Spacey and Farrell, who stole the show in the first film, but to replace it with Chris Pine and a rather bland Christoph Waltz? The result is a movie with few laughs, a pedestrian plot and the same comedy that was just okay from the first movie returning.
The three main leads range from good to downright annoying. Sudeikis is the better of the three, with his rubbery face being used in some of the funnier moment. Bateman is, well, Jason Bateman. He comes in two flavors: wild and crazy or middle of the road and he’s the latter, which is what he does best apparently.
Just like the first movie, Charlie Day is probably the most annoying character in this movie, including Chris Pine’s annoying rich brat son. His annoyingly dim character, deprived of any wit or any redeeming qualities, is worsened by Day’s over-the-top performance and his chalkboard scratching voice. This was the same way in the first movie, but was mitigated by Aniston’s over-the-top and hilarious performance (which makes brief glimpses here that aren’t really necessary).
The key problem with this movie is the fact that it forgot that the main characters weren’t the reason the first one was good; it was the “bosses” that stole the show. This movie then turns into a kidnap/ransom film with these characters and a wholly unlikable Chris Pine. The villain, played by Christoph Waltz, is barely in the film to even make an impression. He basically sleepwalks through the film and plays a general stereotypical asshole.
And the cameos with the bosses from the old movie are just completely pointless and provide little to no laughs. Jennifer Aniston as a sex crazed dentist loses her punch from the first movie, making her pretty much a caricature within a caricature of her good girl image. Kevin Spacey is…well, Kevin Spacey with a scruffy beard. Take with it what you will. Jamie Foxx is also good in his previous role, but nothing special.
Let’s just call Horrible Bosses 2 what it is: a cash-in that calls back to what was good about the first movie and says “Hey, remember that!”. Only it doesn’t even reach the average heights the first movie did. Laughs are sparse unless you really enjoyed the last movie, then you’re getting some of the same. Let this please be the end.
1.5/5 – Few laughs; Forgets what made the first movie good
The Wiz Says #14