365 Movies By Day Reviews of Movies I Watch that I Feel Like Writing About

21Oct/150

Horrible Bosses 2 (2014)

Horrible Bosses wowed audiences ($117 million) and won over most critics (69% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes) back in the summer of 2011. The unlikely comedy starred three guys in their late 30's/early 40's who absolutely hated the bosses that they worked for so much that they plotted ways to get even with them for making their work lives so miserable. With an unlikely group that had TWO Best Actor Academy Award (Kevin Spacey, Jamie Foxx) winners from the last fifteen years signed on as supporting characters, this cast was a list of who's who in Hollywood. The movie is extremely funny and is very much worth a view. It seems, however, that the same critics who lauded the Horrible Bosses seem to be the same ones crushing Horrible Bosses 2 (just 35% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes). While I wouldn't go so far as to say the sequel was better than the first one, it was comparable in terms of laughs. While the formula is the same, the jokes are new and original and the payoff is just as good as the original. With that said, I hope that this franchise quits while it's ahead. I could see a potential Horrible Bosses 3 resulting in an utter disaster.

Horrible Bosses 2 starts off with a bang. Desperate to work for themselves, Nick (Jason Bateman - The Gift, Juno), Kurt (Jason Sudeikis - We're the Millers, Hall Pass), and Dale (Charlie Day - The LEGO Movie, Pacific Rim) invent The Shower Buddy, a device the dispenses various shampoos and conditioners from shower-head nozzles. While on a Los Angeles morning television talk show to give a demonstration of the show and hope give their invention national appeal, anything and everything that could go wrong does go wrong, providing for hilarious laugh out loud moments. Likewise the trio reveals the name of their company NickKurtDale which sounds like something very derogatory when said aloud quickly. So their potential moment of triumph turns to one of misery as they are chased off the stage and ridiculed.

However, there is one investor named Rex (Chris Pine - Star Trek: Into Darkness, Unstoppable) who is interested in their product and offers to buy their company for a "respectable price". When they turn him down, he says that price was $3,000,000. That leads to a pretty funny back and forth too. But as it turns out, Rex has no power. The company he falsely representing actually belongs to his father Burt (Christoph Waltz - Inglorious Bastards, Django Unchained). Fortunately for Nick, Kurt, and Dale, Burt offers to buy 100,000 Shower Buddies for distribution rights and even gives them name of a banker who they could get a loan from for production. Little do they know that after all 100,000 are produced, Burt backs out on the deal. With no way to pay the bank back for the loan they borrowed, Burt is able to buy all of the Shower Buddy below unit costs.

With even more reason to get even with a boss, the trio devises the most devious of plans that involves kidnapping Rex and then demanding a large sum of money from Burt to get him back. To accomplish their mention, they list some assistance from Dean "MF" Jones (Jamie Foxx - Ray, Collateral) as well as Dave (Kevin Spacey - American Beauty, Se7en) who is now behind bars thanks to repercussions from the original movie. And of course they run into Dr. Julia Harris (Jennifer Aniston - Cake, The Good Girl), Dale's former boss from his job as a dental assistant who steals the movie as an impulsive, no bones about it, sex addict. Just like in the original, the knock out Julia continues to be obsessed with Dale because he's the one person in life who ever turned him down. There is a pretty funny scene when a sex addiction meeting is being held, but Nick isn't aware of it is forced to attend after being caught in the hallway of a building he shouldn't have been by a security guard. He thinks everyone is there for an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting so, of course, more good laughs occur. In a movie that has an incredible ensemble, Aniston's Julia steals the show. Her unfiltered mouth and flat out abrasiveness when it comes to her feelings on sex is so funny, it's almost uncomfortable. Her role is so different from anything that she's been in before that you have to do a double-take to remember that it's here.

While it doesn't have the originality of Horrible Bosses and it's not nearly as polished from start to finish, it's a decent sequel that has its share of laughs. Is it corny and unrealistic? Of course it is? But it's also fun to see these novices get themselves in situations that they are almost able to get out of only to do something stupid and end up in a situation that was worse than what they were in prior. Bateman, Sudeikis, and Day have a certain chemistry that works though it does seem like they might be ad libbing at times. Not every seen was perfect or even close to perfect. In fact, some scenes were just kind of lamb, but there are enough good laughs, in my opinion, to give this movie a chance on a quiet night at home (especially if you liked the first one). Definitely if your looking for a good R-Rated comedy, you could do much worse. With that said, if this movie comes across a basic cable channel, I would skip it. You really need to have need the explicit language and sexual innuendo for this movie to really have its desired effect.

Plot 8/10
Character Development 7/10
Character Chemistry 9/10
Acting 8/10
Screenplay 7/10
Directing  7.5/10
Cinematography 7.5/10
Sound 7/10 (needed a really cool summer soundtrack to go with it or something)
Hook and Reel 10/10 (the first scene is the funniest of the movie and, while it drags a little at times, there are enough funny moments to keep you laughing)
Universal Relevance 9/10 (who hasn't had a boss who they've not liked at one time in their lives...mine was the store manager at Harris Teeter when I worked there for si months during grad school)
80%

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