Do you hate your boss? If so, what lengths would you go to get rid of them? Complain to head office, complain to the authorities, maybe even set them up for the more twisted mind. Or, if you’re Charlie Day, Jason Sudeikis or Jason Bateman in Horrible Bosses then you decide to kill them. Needs must and all that.
Jason Bateman, again giving the kind of performance which makes him seem a stellar chap to have a pint with (as long as you’re not plotting murders) thinks he is in line for a promotion. That is, until his tormentor and boss Kevin Spacey decides to promote himself, and entraps Bateman with the promise of a rotten recommendation to any other company. Jason Sudeikis loves his boss, until a heart attack means his deliciously lecherous son Colin Farrell is placed in charge by default. Aside from setting up a lap-dancing club in his office and telling Sudeikis to ‘trim the fat’ – fire the obese staff members- he’s also threatening to dispose of chemical waste in a manner which threatens the lives of thousands of Bolivians to save a quick buck. Charlie Day, a whiny and nasal dental hygienist, dreams of being a husband, and his wish is set to come true with his beloved fiancé. Jennifer Aniston is highly sex-charged and is willing to do anything to stop this, including blackmail with pictures taken when Day was under anaesthetic.
If we ignore the fact that the central premise is rather extreme to the max (this isn’t trying to be the new Strangers on a Train as the script cleverly refers to), then what we have is a comedy flick which has its roots in the capers of old, which is actually pretty funny. Whilst Charlie Day tends to annoy as the film progresses – aside from the fact that he delivers a true rarity in comedy, a scene in which a star mimes to a popular song…which is funny-, all the central characters, bosses and all, are judged brilliantly. We can even buy Jason Sudeikis as a womaniser. The biggest shame in the entire film is that we don’t actually see enough of the bosses in all their ‘glory’, particularly Colin Farrell who steals the show each time his comb over pops up. When the main issue of a film is that the audience is left wanting more, and not in the sense that they feel unfulfilled, then there’s clearly something being done right.
If the film isn’t completely perfect- Jamie Foxx’s ‘hitman advice’ isn’t particularly bad yet it’s played up as if it’s a total disaster, and the pay-offs may not be completely satisfying, in a year in which audiences have had to endure the likes of The Hangover Part 2 and Your Highness, it’s refreshing that there’s a comedy film which actually tickles the funny bone. Just make sure that the next time you’re in work, you tread round your boss a little more cautiously.