Office Christmas Party
Starring Jason Bateman, Olivia Munn, Jennifer Aniston, Kate McKinnon, T.J. Miller, Rob Corddry, Vanessa Bayer
From the directors of Blades of Glory comes one of 2016’s worst films. As if the holiday noise wasn’t bad enough, Office Christmas Party, manages to out curse and travel beyond the boiling point of stupidity compared with competing holiday flicks Why Him and Bad Santa 2. If you have seen one Bateman/Aniston collaboration, you have seen them all. Office Christmas Party marks their fifth time working together. SNL alums McKinnon (Ghostbusters) and Bayer (Trainwreck) join the usual crass-comedy-players Miller (Our Idiot Brother) and Corddry (Hot Tub Time Machine 2) in a predictable, throw away plot that bets everything on the rowdy gags that occur in and around a skit that should have only lasted about five minutes.
Faced with having the Chicago branch of his fathers prized tech company closed by his heartless CEO of a sister; Clay Vanstone (Miller) decides to throw the Christmas party of all parties to win over the client they need to save everyone’s jobs. Josh Parker (Bateman) and Tracey Hughes (Munn) are the flirty minds behind the company and stand up to Carol Vanstone (Aniston) in her determination to shut things down and suspend 200 jobs days before Christmas. “No party!” she says, ripping down holiday garland, but her nonsensical brother has other plans. A club DJ, hookers, flowing booze and endless amounts of sex and nudity fill the office cubicles and work space as the struggling Zenotek company risks everything for a night of debauchery.
If Bateman’s name is on the marquee, you know what’s on the menu.
For every good movie Bateman stars in, there are about five terrible ones to suffer through where he has the same haircut, the same bored face and the same role. One of the most predictable actors in the comedy genre, if Bateman’s name is on the marquee, you know what’s on the menu. The same could be said for Aniston, but more specifically Aniston when co-starring with Bateman. Together they are one of cinemas most unsatisfying duos. McKinnon, who has single handedly made SNL worth watching, same with the Ghostbusters reboot, is wasted here. Her human resources stickler, multidenominational holiday sweater wearing, uncontrollably farting employee is not one of her better impersonations. Bayer’s transition to feature film continues to be misguided, while the rest of the cast assume roles they have already tried and failed with in the past.
The biggest failure for a comedy is the lack of laughter, and I didn’t laugh once at the grotesque scenes of employees photocopying private parts, or conservative business men getting drunk and swinging on Christmas lights, even the Kelly Clarkson look-alike pimp wasn’t funny. The office and employees at Zenotek, never for one second resemble a real cooperate office of any kind, and that’s where the problem starts, we never believe in the scenario. You begin to understand that the plot to save the office in two days, is just a façade to film vulgarity that the producers are sure audiences will pay to see, because this is after all America.
It’s like Bad Santa 2, but instead of talented actors starring in a bad movie, it’s uninspired talent at their laziest.