For Nick (Jason Bateman), Kurt (Jason Sudeikis) and Dale (Charlie Day), the only thing that would make the daily grind more tolerable would be to grind their intolerable bosses into dust. Quitting is not an option, so, with the benefit of a few too many drinks and some dubious advice from a hustling ex-con, the three friends devise a convoluted and seemingly foolproof plan to rid themselves of their respective employers...permanently. There’s only one problem: even the best-laid plans are only as foolproof as the brains behind them.
Over the top? Ridiculous? Yes, indeed. But Horrible Bosses
is actually a truly hilarious movie that wings along on the strength of its leading actors and their amazing chemistry--and on its great high-concept premise. Three friends, Nick (Jason Bateman), Kurt (Jason Sudeikis), and Dale (Charlie Day), commiserate about their three respective Horrible Bosses. And yes, each is the worst kind of HR nightmare. Nick's boss is Dave (Kevin Spacey, terrific), a control-freak megalomaniac. Kurt's is Bobby (an almost unrecognizable Colin Farrell), a skeevy cokehead. And Dale's is Julia (Jennifer Aniston, having so much fun it's contagious), a sexual harasser who never misses an opportunity to prey (or swear). Suddenly, there's a Hitchcockian twist: What if each of the miserable workers could make one of the others' worst nightmares go away? But Horrible Bosses
is no Strangers on a Train
. Instead, it's a rollicking romp of bad-intentions-gone-even-worse, with the chemistry of all of the actors keeping things moving along crisply. The supporting cast is also great, including Donald Sutherland and Jamie Foxx, a tough hood whom the trio has the very bad sense to get "hit tips" from. Spacey hasn't been in his element like this in years, and it's great to see him back in top form. Farrell should be appreciated as a comic genius after this performance (splendidly directed, it should be pointed out, by veteran TV sitcom director Seth Gordon). And Horrible Bosses
gives Aniston a meaty role she was born to play--assertive, moral-less, vengeful, petty. And all of it hilarious. For anyone who's ever had a bad boss, and even fleetingly played with the dark notion that's played here for laughs, Horrible Bosses
is the best kind of revenge--served with laughs. --A.T. Hurley