Review – Horrible Bosses

Comedies succeed when they tap into a basic premise that most people can relate to. ‘The Hangover’ got it right because most people at some point in their lives have woken up with no memory of the night before. ‘Bridesmaids’ tapped into the nightmare of being involved in a bridal party. ‘Horrible Bosses’ acknowledges the fact we’ve all had a boss we wanted to throw off the Empire State Building during our careers.

Nick (Jason Bateman), Dale (Charlie Day) and Kurt (Jason Sudeikis) hate their bosses. After a series of incidents they come up with a plan to get rid of their superiors for good.

The good news is ‘Horrible Bosses’ is funny, which is a relief after the dreadfully unfunny ‘Bad Teacher’ and ‘Hall Pass’ earlier this year. The laughs are not consistent enough to have you in a side-splitting mess, but the gags are effective and don’t rely on gross out humor too heavily. The plot is predictable on the surface, but there are a few surprises that will keep you hooked, and it’s interesting to see how they cleverly tie the characters together.

A solid comedic cast keeps ‘Horrible Bosses’ on track, with Bateman and Sudeikis pulling off the shtick for which they’re famous. Jennifer Aniston takes a risk and it pays off, stepping outside of her soppy romantic comedy bubble and playing an oversexed dentist. Kevin Spacey is great as the manager from hell, while Colin Farrell is good as a money hungry sleazebag, who unfortunately gets very little screen time. Jamie Foxx is also relegated to near cameo status, but milks his scenes for laughs. The big winner is relatively unknown Day (known primarily for his work on television in ‘It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia’), who doesn’t waste any time winning over the audience and planting his flag as the next big comedy heavyweight.

‘Horrible Bosses’ works well because it plays with those revenge fantasies that we can all relate to … unless you spend a ridiculous amount of time in line at a Centrelink each week.

3/5

Roadshow

‘Horrible Bosses’ is now showing in the US and opens in Australia 25 August 2011.

The Popcorn Junkie

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