Buddy comedies are always funny for me, even with recycled jokes that sometimes work and sometimes fall flat. The reason perhaps is because people don’t often expect much from these types of movies — just laugh inducing skits and mishaps that the characters go through in order to achieve a fairly simple goal.
Horrible Bosses managed to level up its game compared to other similar themed movies as it went all out with the casting, signing up Hollywood A-listers Kevin Spacey, Jennifer Aniston and Colin Farrel as the horrible bosses of popular comedians Jason Bateman (The Switch, Change Up, Paul), Jason Sudeikis (Hall Pass) and Charlie Day (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia) to bring to life obnoxious characters (that are very out of the norm for Spacey, Aniston and Farrel) who make the lives of their subordinates miserable to the point that the three hatch a plot to kill each other’s bosses to end their respective ordeals.
Spacey stars Dave Harken, the asswipe president of a company who exists only to catch his wife in the act of cheating on him and make each day of Nick Hendricks’ (Bateman) life a living hell, and Aniston plays the role of nymphomaniac dentist Julie Harris who constantly harrasses Dale Arbus (Day), her dentist aide, into sleeping with her. Jason Sudeikis’s character Kurt Buckman, was the only one in the lot who was happy with his job working for Jack Pellit (Donald Sutherland) until he dies in an accident leaving his cokehead weirdo son Bobby Pellit in charge. One night, the three decide that they’ve had enough of their bosses and hire a killer (Jamie Foxx) to off the banes of their existence. However, problems arise when they find out that their hired gun is actually not a killer but rather a serial bootlegger who just knows how to sound scary.
The movie was very funny because the stars, despite their status in Hollywood were able to let their hair down and not take themselves too seriously, acting outrageous and unmindful of their appearance, especially Colin Farrel, whose character was a balding drug dependent weirdo. Kevin Spacey did not do much that he hasn’t done before but Jennifer Aniston’s comedic skills and sex appeal was put to the test with this movie as it challenged her in a role that was completely opposite the wholesome goody two shoes roles that she often plays. One major surprise the audience will get is probably on how she was very comfortable playing a vixen, even at her age, which showed her confidence in experimenting with her image at this stage in her career.
Bateman, Day and Sudeikis meanwhile, were perfect goofballs in their own right. Nick as the most mature of the group; Kurt as as the womanizing douche who finds it hard to focus on the mission because of the women, and Dale, who always screws up as he triggers mishap after mishap. The guys had perfect rapport and seemed to enjoy themselves while doing the movie, making them fun to watch and highly relateable to the audience. The script was also top notch, but I had the feeling that the guys were the injecting ad libs half the time because they’re proven comedic geniuses.
All in all, Horrible Bosses was far from horrible. It had a simple plot, true, but it was an entertaining take on the extent some guys would go because of work troubles. It might even strike a chord with some who have experienced or encountered similar types of bosses, perhaps not to the same extent as these guys, but it’s funny to see them attempt what some only imagine in their heads while thinking of terrible people they work for, or with.