Movie Review - Horrible Bosses 2
If you haven't seen the first, you might be a little thrown when at once you're thrown into the verbal Three Stooges that are Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis and Charlie Day. Their characters aren't brothers, but at almost every moment they act like they are. They're constantly fighting, insulting and bickering with each other, but, instead of vaudeville and slapstick, Bateman, Sudeikis and Day are more verbal, vocally berating or annoying each other.
Jason Bateman stars as Nick, the calm, level-headed one and clearly the smartest who mainly rolls his eyes at the other two for their varying levels of stupidity. Yet, he does have his own dunces. Jason Sudeikis stars as Kurt, the horny one who even at his age only does what he does to have sex with hot girls. Charlie Day stars as Dale, the least bright of the three, loud and impulsive, no filters but a family man with a wife and triplets.
Explaining the plot would give away a lot of the gags, which are mainly developed out of it. Basically, Nick, Kurt and Dale go into business together and invent a device called the "Shower Buddy." They go up against a rival business called Boulder Stream, which is run by a wealthy man who seeks to destroy them and takeover the three's company. The wealthy man succeeds, and, like the first movie, the three come up with a plan of revenge that includes mapping out in detail a crime. From that, hilarity ensues.
Chris Pine (Star Trek and Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit) co-stars as Rex Hanson, the son of the wealthy man who becomes involved in the revenge scheme. Pine recently did a comedy where he played an over-the-top and ridiculous character. In Stretch, he was more weird but quieter. Here, he gets to exude a bit more energy and be an overgrown kid literally bouncing off walls.
Christoph Waltz (Inglorious Basterds and Django Unchained) co-stars as Bert Hanson, the wealthy man in question, ruthless and unempathetic. Waltz continues to play off the persona established in those Tarantino films. His comments on the American dream are well-suited though.
The returning actors like Kevin Spacey, Jennifer Aniston and Jamie Foxx are all hilarious. The idea is floated that our three protagonists, instead of fighting against horrible bosses, the three were going to turn into horrible bosses. However, Anders and his other writers don't go anywhere with that.
They call out the obvious comparison to 9 to 5 (1980), but they seem intent on repeating what they did before without taking clear opportunities to attack the problems that new, small business owners face. The numerous sex jokes, particularly gay sex jokes, distract from the lack of substance in this second-outing.
The funniest joke was probably the guys arguing about who would do what in a group sex act. I also think Anders comes up with a unique take on the classic car chase scene. It ends in a car stunt that was also pretty funny.
Four Stars out of Five.
Rated R for strong crude sexual content and language throughout.
Running Time: 1 hr. and 48 mins.