release date: 26 November 2014 (Canada)
run time: 108 mins
director: Sean Anders
starring: Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis, Charlie Day, Jennifer Aniston, Kevin Spacey, Jamie Foxx, Chris Pine, Christoph Waltz, Jonathan Banks, Lindsay Sloane, Keegan-Michael Key, Kelly Stables, Jerry Lambert, Sam Richardson, Brianne Howey
movie summary: Everyone remembers a few years ago when Nick Hendricks (Jason Bateman), Kurt Buckman (Jason Sudeikis), and Dale Arbus (Charlie Day) tried to kill their bosses so they would be able to move up the ladder in their respective companies. These three idiots tried their best to pull off such a fool-proof plan only to see it all backfire and come crumbling down. After a few years of running the show at their workplaces, the three decide to quit their jobs and develop a new product they designed while drinking some beers at the local bar. In an attempt to find investors for their product, The Shower Buddy, they are featured on a local morning show where the demonstration doesn’t go down according to the script.
Multi-millionaire Rex Hanson (Chris Pine) gives the trio a call and offers to buy the design and sell it through his own company, only to have Nick convince the guys that the product is not for sale. When they realize that they have walked away from a $3 million buy out, Rex’s dad Bert Hanson (Christoph Waltz) steps in to offer them a deal they can’t refuse. He offers to buy 100,000 Shower Buddies and distribute them through his company. The guys then take out a loan for $500,000 to buy a warehouse to set up their business and hire employees, some with little to no experience. Kurt hires every good-looking girl that he interviews only to learn he can never hook up with them due to strict workplace sexual harassment policies.
Things are looking great for Nick, Kurt, and Dale when they get all 100,000 products done, packed, and ready for shipment four days ahead of schedule. When they show up at the golf course with cake and balloons to celebrate their crowning achievement with Bert and Rex, they get slapped back to reality when Bert cancels his order. He informs the three idiots that if he cancels his order, there will be no money coming in, the guys will not be able to pay their loan, thus defaulting on it, and Bert can buy the company for pennies on the dollar. Bert and Rex celebrate their successful plan and take the cake leaving the guys to regroup yet again.
In attempt to get a grasp of the situation the guys pay a visit to Nick’s old boss, Dave Harken (Kevin Spacey) who is jail. Dave just laughs at the guys for failing to be good bosses and then informs them there is absolutely nothing they can do. Even if they wanted to do something about the situation he yells at them that they would never have the balls to do it. The guys head back to the office to brainstorm ways to come up with $500,000 and Kurt suggests “kidnaping” before Nick reminds him its “kidnapping”. They fight and argue about ways to get the Hanson’s back before visiting with their favourite criminal friend Dean “MF” Jones (Jamie Foxx). When they tell him their elaborate plan he just laughs at them for even attempting to pull off something so stupid. After getting some more tips on how to be a criminal from MF Jones, the guys head over to Dr. Julia Harris’ (Jennifer Aniston) office to get some laughing gas to use on Rex. After interrupting a sex addiction meeting, Dale grabs the gas and they head over to Rex’s house to spring their plan into action. The laughing gas ends up causing unforeseen problems and when they wake up in the morning they leave the house empty-handed. When they get back to work, they find Rex tied up in the trunk and no one has a clue on how got there. The next step for these master criminals is to set up a ransom drop off and try to take Bert Hanson for over $5,000,000 dollars.
Back in the office the plan is laid out on the dry erase board and then with toys on the break room table. Everything unfolds perfectly on the screen as the three guys tie up Rex and head out to collect their ransom, only to have everything unravel their fool-proof plan at the last moment.
my thoughts: Did any of you have a chance to read my Dumb and Dumber 2 post last week when I said there was no need for that sequel, 20 years later? The same thing can be said about Horrible Bosses 2, except it’s only been three years. I don’t know if it’s me or something else but this was the second movie I’ve seen in recent weeks that totally lost my attention about half way through. Sure there are plenty of laugh out loud moments, I just didn’t find these guys to be as funny this time around compared to the first one. The story is very far-fetched and doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, even for a crime committed in Los Angeles. Also if you’ve seen the first one, you know exactly how this one leads up to the grand finale and end with the same twist. My only fear from the way this one ended is that there may be a Horrible Bosses 3 in the works.
Anyone who has been reading my blog for a while should know by now I love Jason Bateman’s acting. He has a very dry sense of humour and is always the play it safe character that gets dragged into trouble he’s not looking for. His seriousness can be extremely funny when everything falls apart and he’s left trying to aid his idiotic friends through things. Despite his prominent role in the movie, he gets overshadowed by Jason Sudeikis’ sex addiction issues and Charlie Day’s paranoia. Neither of these two have a clue about the real world and how to do anything illegal. Sudeikis’s character gets easily distracted by sexy woman who it will be a major factor of why nothing ends up going according to plan, while Day’s character is so concerned about going to jail on top of his wife and triplet girls that he can’t stay focused on the task at hand. Sudeikis can be a funny guy, while I’ve never been a fan of Day. Neither of them steal the spotlight in this one either because they both fight to stay in spotlight leaving Jason as the odd man out.
Jennifer Aniston returns as a predator who is out to get Day’s character and foil the guy’s attempt of the kidnapping. I didn’t really see the point of revisiting her character except to continue with the sex jokes, bring star power to the cast, and make this a 14A rating. The same can be said with the return of Kevin Spacey. I bet he filmed his scenes in one day and then was off to film something else. He wasn’t as ruthless or funny as the first film and surprised me with his impact on the ending of the movie, which could lead to a Horrible Bosses 3. I felt this was not a great role choice for Chris Pine who could have chosen something better. The master of the double cross, Pine tried to be funny and spent the majority of his screen time laughing at his own jokes which threw off the rhythm of the other three. Christoph Waltz has played evil ruthless guys in many other movies and doesn’t really hit the mark here. He may care more about his money then his own son, but his role is limited to a few lines and scenes which left him totally under utilized.
my final thoughts: Horrible Bosses was a hit back in 2011 because it brought together three funny guys and a brand new unique story. The trio return and use the same old tired jokes in hopes of continuing the success but don’t hold the audience like the first one. My advice to anyone who is interested in seeing HB2, save your money and catch it on a cheap day because to me it’s not worth the full price of admission.
my star rating: 4 out 10
imdb: 7.1 out 10
rottentomatoes: 33% out 100%
roger ebert: 2 out 4
richard crouse: 1 out 5