Director: Seth Gordon
Starring: Jason Bateman, Charlie Day, Jason Sudeikis
Running Time: 98 min
I would kill to see this again...
Come on, fess up! We’ve all thought about it. Some of us may have even mapped it out, mentally of course. Hell, maybe you’re still devising the perfect scheme to off your boss. It’s a dark concept - but then this is a dark movie. It’s the nature of the beast; just like stepmothers and New York taxi drivers - it’s your bosses’ job to make your life a living hell. If ‘Horrible Bosses’ did anything in favour of our superiors; the three dominant figures in this movie make the rest of our bosses look like pussy cats. It’s all in the name of grade ‘A’ comedy, ‘Horrible Bosses’ is an absolute hoot from inventively playful opening to gut punishing finish. Whereas lesser movies stumble over tiring and repetitive jokes; ‘Horrible Bosses’ is fresh from start to finish. Couple that with stellar charm and chemistry between our leads as well as top notch writing and a Director who shows a lot of promise and you got the makings of what could be the comedy gem of the year.
Colin Farrell, Jennifer Aniston, Jason Bateman, and Charlie Day star in this workplace comedy about three frustrated employees who hatch a plan to kill their micromanaging bosses, only to find their murderous plot snowballing into disaster. Seth Gordon (The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters) directs a screenplay written by Michael Markowitz, Jonathan Goldstein, and John Francis Daley.
The plot revels in its absurdity, we’re certain of its irrationality by the time the hysterical Charlie Day explains to us why he’s a certified sex offender. By that point if you don’t know what kind of film your watching...then nobody can help you. It’s not that it’s immature; on the contrary all the jokes are brilliantly written and delivered. The whole movie is a testament to impeccable timing. The story is tight, funny from the word go and packed full of likeable, relatable and incredibly dumb characters. Our leads mimic the lifestyle of the three stooges - njot in the sense that they border on slapstick, but they make some stupid choices that lead to frightfully funny comedy. It’s almost ruined by a sizeable plot hole towards the beginning of the movie; but the sooner you put that the back of your mind the sooner you can enjoy the rest of the movie.
Seth Gordon’s had a rather bumpy career up to now. Anybody who remembers the brilliant ‘King of Kong’ will know how we’ll he does at making the outlandish seem palatable, and fun. Rewind a few years to ‘Four Christmases’ however and you’ll notice how easily he stumbles over generic formulas. The strange thing is that despite being a seemingly overused formula, ‘Horrible Bosses’ has a lot of ingenuity going on. From the relentlessly fast pace, to the neat freeze frames - Gordon does a brilliant job at turning what could have been a tired shoot into something truly unique. He makes no effort at avoiding the aforementioned plot hole which shows that he’s very much still learning but it’s pleasing to see a filmmaker grow with time, even if some common problems crop up from time to time; if this film is anything to go by, I look forward to his new effort anxiously.
The films master stroke is in its casting. You’ll come away with a whole new appreciation for the careers of people I had long since gave up on. Aniston is an absolute knock out. She provides the courage and hilarity that I knew she had in her that had so far been bottle inside of a PG rating. Here she’s able to let loose and boy does she. The chemistry between the leads is stellar, you actually believe that these three and that lends to the humanity of the film and makes the jokes that much more hysterical.
The film is presented in a way that’s not unlike your typical dark comedy; its super stylised, contains some genuine moments of originality and artistic flair, and has an incredibly up beat soundtrack. That said, nothing really caught my eye in the production department. Maybe it isn’t meant too - the film gets by enough on sheer quantity and quality of jokes; but i couldn’t help but feel as if something was missing that... je ne sais quoi that’s hard to pin down. It’s not a game changer by any means necessary - but its noticeable.
Verdict: ‘Horrible Bosses’ delivers a concoction of deathly dark comedy all the while remaining human, genuine and gut bustlingly hysterical. It might sound trite and cliché, but this is the feel good movie of the year thus far - in the sense that I haven’t felt this damn good watching a movie in a while. So long as your able to get past the initial plot hole and stomach some dark comedy you’re guaranteed to have a great time. Energy, chemistry, timing, and a palpable sense of raunchy fun. While nay-sayers may label it as nothing more than a post Hangover rip-off. If you’re a fan of boundaries being pushed. You’ll have twice the fun here as you did in ‘The Hangover’. ‘Horrible Bosses’ works extra hard to hold our attention; and it’s a thriller ride because of it.
+ I laughed from start to finish all the way through.
+ It’s such a treat watching Aniston, Spacey and Farrell play these outlandish characters.
+ The quantity and quality of the jokes are staggering.
+ There’s real chemistry between the leads.
- You have to be able to overlook a rather gaping plot hole.