DIR: Sean Anders • WRI: Sean Anders, John Morris • PRO: Chris Bender, John Cheng, John Morris, Brett Ratner, John Rickard, Jay Stern • DOP: Julio Macat • ED: Eric Kissack • MUS: Christopher Lennertz • DES: Clayton Hartley • CAST: Jason Bateman, Charlie Day, Jason Sudeikis
I was a big fan of the original instalment of this series, and approached this sequel with an almost equal amount of trepidation, and excitement. If I had to decide after the viewing, which feeling has now been validated, I’d have to side with the trepidation. One of the main reasons for my excitement, in hindsight, was the absolutely brilliant 22 Jump Street, which had me approaching this movie with unwarranted positivity, when considering the batting average of comedy sequels historically. However, I have been sent crashing back to earth by this lazy, yet mildly amusing sequel.
Unlike most sequels the plot has had to deviate a lot from the original, mainly due to the fact that the level of contrivance would just be unbearable, if the three main characters, Nick, Kurt and Dale, were to find themselves shockingly under three new “horrible bosses”. The story starts off with our three main characters attempting to start their own business, and in essence banish the role of bosses from their lives forever, but as you might expect things don’t exactly go to plan. Their business idea ‘Shower Buddy’ gets stolen by a wealthy investor Burt Hansen, who tricks them into investing over 500,000 dollars in a manufacturing plant. Now, hugely in debt, the three guys decide that kidnapping Hansen’s evil son Rex, is the best way of recouping their money.
As is par for the course, the film desperately scrambles to include all of the popular elements of the original, with predictable cameos coming from Jennifer Aniston, Kevin Spacey and Jaimie Foxx forced into the storyline. The film contains a lot of suspect humour, which could be considered at times both racist and misogynistic, and there’s no doubt that there’s a huge decline in quality when compared to the original.
In Bateman, Sudekis, and Day, however, the film has three hugely talented comic actors, who are able to produce laughs from the sparse material they have been given. From the fresh faces in the movie, Christoph Waltz is hugely underutilised in the role as Kurt Hansen, while I hope this movie is both the beginning and end of Chris Pine’s comedic aspirations, after a try hard performance as Kurt’s son Rex. I think fans of the original will possibly find enough laughs here to make the film worthwhile, while anyone who wasn’t a fan of the first movie will possibly be hurling objects at the screen.
15A (See IFCO for details)
Horrible Bosses 2 is released 28th November 2014