I liked the original movie “Horrible Bosses”: but they didn’t seem to leave much room to make a sequel. Needless to say, I was curious as to how it was going to work out. While it hasn’t done as well as the original, Horrible Bosses 2 is doing well at the box office, though it’s not performing as well with critics.
In this story, our previous leads have invented something called the Shower Buddy. They form their own company, so they can be their own bosses and never have to deal with bad bosses again. They strike a deal with some unscrupulous distributors. When the deal goes sour, the three create an improbable kidnapping scheme (via 9 to 5) in order to take back their invention.
I’d say my biggest complaint was how far away they strayed from the original. Though exaggerated, the bosses in the original were actually bosses you could have. The bad guys in this one are complete caricatures of snake oil salesmen, and it’s pretty amazing that the three fall for their schemes.
Of course, that was accomplished by the three somehow dropping like 30 IQ points a piece since the last movie. The guys in the first movie were unlucky, but they weren’t stupid. The ones in this movie are complete idiots. The reason I liked the first movie so much was because I could say “hey, those guys remind me of me.” In this movie, they don’t remind me of anyone I’ve ever met.
In fact, they were so dumb it was nearly impossible to sympathize with them.
The office genre comedy is successful because there are so many office drones out there who feel the same way. Whether it’s tedious work, irritating coworkers or bosses that are more robot than human, we all feel like we’ve been there. Horrible Bosses 2 loses the magic of that, by turning these guys into business owners with a ridiculous invention, and then having them fail because they made a bad business decision.
It’s much harder to sympathize with a character in one of these movies when they’re the ones making the mistakes. I mean, I’m a business owner. I would never work with a distributor without vetting them first…. or even talking to a lawyer. In this movie, the cause of the conflict was so completely unrealistic, and the characters changed so much, I could no longer empathize with them. I didn’t even care about them.
I had another problem with the movie and that was Jennifer Aniston’s character. While playing the foul mouthed sexual harassment vixen in the first movie, she was hilarious and hate-able. In this one, she does something that I think went way too far, when she pretty much sexually assaults a man who has been drugged. If the genders had been reversed, this would have been outrageously controversial and not a bit funny. I don’t care how pretty the aggressor is. If you’re going to make a joke about something like that, you better damn well be able to make it hilarious.
I have to say that I was disappointed by the sequel. In fact, I wish I had never seen it so I would still have the memory of the first good movie in my head. Now, that memory has been forever tarnished.
WE GAVE IT: 2.5 Stars