I sometimes wonder if the local library is aware of some of the crap littering their DVD shelves.
Imagine a Hollywood pitch meeting. Someone comes up with a title. TV sitcom vet Mike Markowitz (Becker, Duckman: Private Dick, The In-Laws) is hired to write a movie around it. Apparently he needs a little “help” because the screenplay credits also list Jonathan Goldstein and Bones star John Frances Daley, co-writers of the recent box office bomb The Incredible Burt Wonderstone.
I mean, everyone has a boss at one time in their lives that is absolutely, um, horrible. Right?
So we have three disgruntled (and, hopefully, relatable) employees (Jason Sudeikis, Charlie Day, Jason Bateman) who scheme (rather ineptly) to exact the ultimate revenge on their bosses (Kevin Spacey, Colin Farrell, Jennifer Aniston. )
I know Horrible Bosses got a 69% approval rating on the rottentomatoes.com Tomatometer and was a huge box office hit (a sequel is already in the works) but to this viewer it plays like an unfunny Saturday Night Live skit (and, depending on what you read, there have been plenty of those in recent years … in other words, if you think SNL is a hoot, you’ll probably love this movie. Come to think of it, Mr. Sudeikis is a SNL veteran and Mr. Day hosted an episode of the show.)
Perhaps the alleged “humour” is just not for my tastes. (I prefer a little subtlety with my wit and you won’t get either of them here, subtlety or wit.) The plot, for lack of a better word, is way over the top. Oscar nominee Jamie Foxx (Ray, Collateral), as a “murder consultant”, is wasted here (figuratively, not literally, although I’m never sure. This is one movie in which the cast is definitely having as much fun as their target demographic. I’m guessing 15- 30 years of age.)
“Charmless vulgarity,” sniffs the newyorker.com, in one of the few reviews with which I can relate, ” Neither the trio of plotters nor the director, Seth Gordon, do more than keep the story moving … the intermittent comic sparks never really ignite. This clunky botch is evidence that, though improvisational skills can be learned, being funny is a gift, one that is little in evidence here.”