‘Horrible Bosses’ Review

In Movies on July 11, 2011 at 5:23 pm

Charlie Day (Dale), Jason Sudeikis (Kurt), and Jason Bateman (Nick) star in the summer comedy 'Horrible Bosses'

by:  Eric Buenning

It’s about time some fresh faces come along in comedies.

We are at an awkward time in this genre with funny lead men.  We may have already digested all we could handle from the Judd Apatow team of Seth Rogen, Jason Segel, Paul Rudd, Adam Sandler, and lower level actors Martin Starr and Jay Baruchel (Actually, Jason Segel—one of my favorite actors—gets a break here based on him being the writer of Forgetting Sarah Marshall and the his role in the television sitcom How I Met Your Mother  and the film Bad Teacher, not to mention The Muppets Movie coming out in November).  Steve Carrell and Will Ferrell are funny, but they are getting up there in age and may fade away sooner than we think.  Will Smith isn’t really doing comedy any more either.  The only people I can think of that are starting to be “mainstream” now are Jonah Hill, Danny McBride (maybe), Jesse Eisenberg (maybe???) and maybe a few upstart stand-up comedians (Daniel Tosh? Aziz Ansari?)

Basically, what this all boils down to is that we as a viewership probably are looking for someone who can come in hold their own in a comedy for a while.  We finally got a glimpse of it two years ago with The Hangover.  Finally some new faces in a different type of comedy.  The great reaction to The Hangover wasn’t because of the stars, it was because it was something and someone doing something that we hadn’t seen before (there has got to be a better way to word that….).  Well, two years after that crazy ride in Vegas, we can tack on a few more actors to this dwindling list.

Horrible Bosses is a comedy woven into a surprisingly serious plot (otherwise known as a “black comedy” or “dark comedy”).  It follows the lives of three friends looking to find a way out of their miserable jobs.  Nick (Jason Bateman) works at a financial firm, headed by Dave Harken (Kevin Spacey) who completely manipulates and abuses Nick constantly.  Dale (Charlie Day) is a dental hygienist who is constantly being sexually harassed by his boss Dr. Julia Harris (played by Jennifer Aniston, who looks phenomenal).  Lastly, there is Kurt (Jason Sudeikis) who works at an industrial company headed by Jack Pellitt.  Jack actually enjoys Kurt, but suddenly dies of a heart-attack, leaving his obnoxious, cocaine-addicted, prick of a son Bobby (Colin Farrell) in charge.  The three seem to routinely gather at a bar and gripe about their miserable lives, but during a hypothetical conversation one night, the idea of murdering their bosses comes up.  The idea seems way out of this world, until the misery of their actual lives becomes too much.  They decide to enlist the help of a hit man played by Jamie Foxx, whose nickname I’ll leave out for your enjoyment.  It is established that the three men will kill each other’s bosses, and, needless to say, things don’t exactly go as planned.

We’ve seen this type of movie before, but not as well done as this.  Pineapple Express kind of reminded me of this, but that was a little different plot and a lot worse of a movie overall.  Bosses has good energy and pace and lots of moments that will have you laughing.  It’s nice to see Sudeikis and Day make names for themselves on the big screen after successful careers on Saturday Night Live and It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, respectively.  Spacey, Aniston, and Farrell make compelling villains, and director Seth Gordon really sets up a nice little game of cat-and-mouse and mixes in the comedy very well.

This doesn’t have the same lingering affect that The Hangover did, and it probably won’t be a classic for most, but it was surely refreshing to get a break from the typical male, gross-out comedy.  It was definitely a relief to see some new guys step in to big comedy roles, too.

It was for sure refreshing to see Jennifer Aniston again.  Wow.

Rating:  3 out of 4 stars

Here is the trailer for the movie

  1. I thought this was pretty funny. Bateman, Day and Sudeikis had really great chemistry and Aniston, Spacey, and Farrell were all pretty evil and villainous as the bosses.. I did wish it would have gotten a bit darker with it’s subject at certain times but overall, pretty good I thought. Good Review! Check out mine when you can!

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