Imagine the plot of Alfred Hitchcock’s Strangers on a Train getting rerouted into the realm of screwball revenge comedy, and you’ll start to get a picture of what Horrible Bosses is like. A non stop, unpredictable comedy that never slows down once the plot gets rolling, this film shows off the talents of a director with a knack for memorably outlandish characters and a talent for casting very familiar faces in an absurd new light.
From the opening scene detailing the humiliation and abuse that our three protagonists must endure on a daily basis, Horrible Bosses hums with comic energy. Though it may seem like an incredible feat to maintain such momentum for the whole film the director and company make a commendable effort by focusing on both the reprehensible actions of the titular villains and the incredulous reactions of the downtrodden working stiffs as they’re pushed to the edge of reason.
Kevin Spacey is outstandingly nasty in this film throwing off sparks left right and centre, he is so horrible you hate him so much, that you almost start liking his character again. Even though Spacey was excellent, it’s Colin Farrell who gets the best performance appraisal. Nearly unrecognizable in a bad comb-over and snug polyester pants, the handsome star fits into his despicable role so well that you’ll wish he had more scenes. And then we have the hot babe in a lab coat, Jennifer Aniston may get more screen time than her less-attractive co-star, but it’s Charlie Day’s reactions to her character’s psychotic come-ons that help give their scenes together an effective comic rhythm. This is probably Aniston’s best, postFriends performance, to date, if for no other reason other than to see her in a good film, you should see Horrible Bosses. A special mention has to go out to the ever wonderful straight man Jason Bateman, who I feel is probably the best comic actor out there at the moment and I almost always like what ever he is involved with.
Horrible Bosses succeeds because it takes a situation everyone can relate to and milks it for maximum comic potential so we can forget our own workplace woes for just a brief moment. Also, having an amazing A-list cast at the absolute top of their acting game doesn’t hurt either. Seriously, watch this movie! Recommended.