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Horrible Bosses 2 - Review

Horrible Bosses 2

Review by Rob Carnevale

IndieLondon Rating: 2.5 out of 5

LAUGHING gas and its effect once inhaled features prominently among the jokes of Horrible Bosses 2 but there are times when the creative forces behind this sequel might be hoping that someone let’s off a canister in the cinema given the stuttering nature of their follow-up.

Inferior in almost every department to the 2011 original, Horrible Bosses 2 often feels like a flimsy excuse for a sequel.

In its favour, it still has three leading men in Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis and Charlie Day that possess an easygoing charisma and a strong chemistry, while there are several big laughs to help it along.

But there are also long lulls where nothing much happens or, worse, desperate attempts to mine comedy from sexual degradation that just feels desperate and unnecessary.

Given the presence of four screenwriters (Sean Anders, John Morris, Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daley), there’s also an alarming amount of material that feels improvised with typically hit-and-miss results. It makes you wonder what the writers were doing.

The plot, ironically, isn’t too big a part of the problem. It finds Nick (Bateman), Kurt (Sudeikis) and Dale (Day) hitting upon an idea for an all-in-one shower that will make them their own bosses only to find themselves screwed over by a ruthless corporate big-wig (Christoph Waltz) and his obnoxious son (Chris Pine).

Acting desperately to avoid imminent bankruptcy the three devise a plan to kidnap the boss’s son and hold him to ransom, only to find themselves once more out of their depth as criminals and battling outside interests from the various key players.

Thrown into this mix, too, are Jennifer Aniston’s nymphomaniac dentist (now in ‘rehab’), Kevin Spacey’s murderous boss (still serving time but looking to get ahead) and Jamie Foxx’s Motherf**ker Jones, dispensing more useless advice and even some hands-on help.

Given the quality of its cast, Horrible Bosses 2 does manage to elevate some of the more dubious material but the game performers can only take things so far. Rather, the fault lies with the ropey script, which all too often goes for the crass, and Anders’ direction, which drags things out to unnecessary lengths (the almost two hour running time is overly generous).

Overall, therefore, Horrible Bosses 2 is far too hit-and-miss to be considered a success despite boasting a handful of laugh out loud moments. It’s certainly not terrible but it does sometimes struggle to justify its existence, making talk of a potential third movie feel premature and overly optimistic to say the least.

Certificate: 15
Running time: 110mins
UK Release Date: November 28, 2014