Thursday, April 13, 2017

I don't relate to that as much.

Ninety-five percent of my 'professional' career has been in education, so I've only experienced a true office party once. It was lame as f--k, having to make nice with the endless slew of elderly women I worked with. Hanging out with your grandma can be taxing enough - but multiply that (potential) nightmare by six...teen, and I'm thinking all I want for Christmas is a bullet in my face.

But the worst part - and I've said this before - is that I don't drink. Never have. So even the warm embrace of public intoxication couldn't shield me from hours of idle chit-chat about diabetic cats and UCONN women's basketball. Oh, and if somebody mentions a recipe they have, I might set this whole f--king place on fire.

When did something called a party become so lame and uninspired?

And worse, when did 'comedies' about these parties follow suit?

Despite a solid cast and a highly-exploitable premise, Office Christmas Party, while entirely watchable, plays it safe. Too safe. Sure, cocaine in the snow machine, gun-toting lady-pimps and 3D printouts of cock'n'balls may not seemed restrained, it sure as shit feels like it. Maybe my expectations were too high, or my testicles too low, but I didn't find directors Josh Gordon and Will Speck's film all that funny.

But...somehow...I still kind of enjoyed it.

When word gets out that his branch may be closed down and his employees laid off, the bumbling head honcho of Zenotek's Chicago branch comes up with a last-ditch plan to save the day. Against his bitchy sister's wishes, he's going all in on the office Christmas party. Er, non-denominational holiday get-together. Not only to cheer up his shitty employees, but in hopes of wooing a big client who values family over business as usual.

From there, it's just the kind of nonsense that you'd expect in a (bad?) holiday film: lessons will be learned, family will finally trump money, love will be found in the most unlikely of places, and most obviously, everyone will be just a little bit nicer, because, you know, it's Christmas! for f--k's sake. Or it was, as I saw this movie a few days ago. In f--king April.

See, you put Jason Bateman in that quiet nice-guy role he does so well, add in a little T.J. Miller and his silly voice, then cover the whole thing with some fine-ass Olivia Munn, and I just might be good. Throw in the black dude from Veep, and a host of other randos (Kate McKinnon, Rob Corddry, Randall Park, etc.) and you will, at the very least, have my attention. Isn't that enough, dear reader? Isn't it? Well, no, it isn't. But for a hundred minutes on a weeknight? That'll do , Donkey. That'll do.

Why would you put the Tomatometer on the screen in front of all the actors?

Speaking of annoying jackasses that won't stop talking, here are the Yays and Boos. We're big fans of ensemble comedies, which is a statement that when put into Google translate, is another way of saying we like huge piles of dogshit (seriously, are any of these movies ever any good?).

This could be me and you next Christmas.
  • I was happy enough when I saw Mike, but then we get Richard, too? Sweet! (and is it me, or do Veep cast members only travel in pairs?)
  • I love Kate McKinnon. Yes, she's basically playing a different version of crazy bitch every time she appears onscreen, but she does it so well, you know? (I actually liked her whole arc, surprisingly).
  • Dude, Jaime Chung needs to be in more stuff. And by more stuff, clearly I mean my pants.
  • And speaking of undeniably sexy, let me (again?) put my clammy hands together for Olivia Munn. I'm not sure about her character (uh, she's kind of a college dude wrapped in hot adult woman), but I am sure she's gorgeous.
  • Okay, there are two major falls in this flick, and both are insanely beautiful. Even though I don't think either would qualify, each devastating crash (and subsequent human rag-doll action) solidifies the notion that Best Stunt should be a category in the Oscars.
  • Jimmy Butler? Really? Okay. I'll roll with this (giant) dude.
  • Even if I know it's gonna smash my dick in half, seeing people joyfully soar down a Slip'n'Slide always makes me want to follow suit. 
  • Wow. Jennifer Aniston really unloads on that little girl. If only I could do this once. Just stare a little shit down and tell them...the truth. 
  • So, somehow, the best character in this f--king movie? Turns out to be this random Uber-driver lady. She's so the raddest way possible.
  • Aniston basically plays the villain, which is fine (she ruled in Horrible Bosses [review], but it's her eventual turn that really gets the Yay. When she saunters into that billiards room, and basically rolls up her sleeves? *inaudible moaning* Sd ljn;lqnwadkvjns;dvnvvswdcee22ee Sorry. I blacked out for a second.
  • And finally, the ending. The big climax is basically totally f--king moronic, but I couldn't help but laugh at the reactions of everybody involved. Kate McKinnon's face basically wins everything. Oh, and this part? It comes before the cheesy feel-good ending. 
But then again, so could this...
  • Being that this was most definitely a rental, I didn't have the option of seeing the unrated version. While I doubt it was much funnier, I can only assume it had an extra 15 minutes of heaving holiday breasts. But it actually only haaaa-shhh...let me dream.
  • Bad movie or not, I'm not buying the fact Olivia Munn's office looks like The Sherminator's dormroom. It was so extreme, bro. 
  • Bateman's character changes his emergency contact information to self. That's so sad...
  • Some random employee brings his kid to the party. Not only is this guy (and his wife) a Boo, but so is the fact that they just put the kid on the iPad and he's good. (uh, this is how society ends, by the way)
  • Whoa. This lady is like, the coolest pimp ever. She's so...nup, scratch that. This bitch be cuh-razy.
  • Making out in a nursery is probably very cool, you know, if you're a f--king weirdo (huh huh, I'm not) but elevating the face-sucking to baby-syle role play? Eeeeeee. Not so much. Something's happening in my diaper!
  • At one point (uh, at all points), the party is getting super lame. Luckily they have a guaranteed thing that will get everyone super-psyched. Oh, wait. It's the dumbest f--king thing ever.
  • Yes! A dance-off ensues! Sweet. Oh, wait. This is terrible. And unfunny. And I hate everything now.
  • I still don't understand how we got to the point where one dick = two breasts. This math is so totally wrong, I feel like we've failed as a society. F--king Common Core...
  • And finally, why wasn't this movie funnier? Was it because of the forced sentimentality? Because there's no reason for that. No one will remember that all of these characters lived happily ever after. But what they won't forget? There was no joy on Christmas.
School holiday parties, like this film, are also a hopelessly mixed bag. But there is joy to be had, if you're willing to sift through a shit ton of nonsense.

In my youth (like, my twenties), people at our school parties tended to get a bit out of control, as we were off for the next ten days guaranteed. F--k lesson plans (even though I didn't do them), f--k this place (even though I lived close by), f--k these kids (uh, this I support), f--k everything.

But then everyone got older. Everybody started having kids of their own. Then, when the party time came - instantly, people started looking at their phones. Uh, guys,,,I still haven't found anything for my wife. Yeah...we need to be on the road early. We're bringing desert to my and on and on.

Maybe it's not the parties that got lame. Or the movies about those parties.

Maybe we did.


  1. It looked really generic to me, despite liking a lot of the actors in it. I never bothered. I haven't been to an office party in a few years either. I'm becoming far too antisocial. lol

    1. It was pretty generic, despite having a solid collection of notable comedians in it.

      I guess we're both antisocial? Are all bloggers?

  2. They must travel in threes...Mike, Richard and....Randall Park who you say is in this, was on Veep too. The annoying good soldier governor. Danny Chung. The dick in HIGH-def.

    First you you forget shovel scene, then you kill Lansbury and now this? You're functioning worse than a mess in heat currently drinking a second glass of whiskey, dude

    "Bateman's character changes his emergency contact information to self. That's so sad..."

    thank you for giving me this cheerful look into my own future :)

    1. Damn you and your impeccable memory. I totally forgot about Danny Chung. Grrrr.

      Clearly I'm slipping in my old age. It's a good thing I've got youngsters like you wiping grandpa's chin as it were (God, that sounds terrible). can always write in: the proprietor of Two Dollar Cinema. Though, if it were a real're pretty much f--ked.

  3. "one dick = two breasts. This math is so totally wrong...F--king Common Core." I have no idea what this is referring to, bit it cracked me up.

    I like the cast of this movie, but it sounds underwhelming.

    1. I feel like in the last few rated-R comedies that I've stumbled across, the penis is on full display, while exposed breasts are on the decline. In my youth, the wiener only made an appearance after dozens of breasts, but know? The ratio has fallen in on itself, and to put it mildly, SOCIETY IS CRUMBLING.

      Yes, this movie is underwhelming...but not offensively so. To me. That one time.

  4. My office consists of me, a married couple, and the two bosses, so you can imagine how boring our Christmas parties are! I was going to see this to counter the boredom, but ended up missing it completely. It's not odd to watch it at Easter, right?!

    1. WOW! That office sounds like a blast! Why do you need two bosses...for three employees? Seems a bit much, no? And how will they function when you're out with a BABY!!!!!!!!! Yay on that, Allie!!

      It's probably odd to watch it any time, but on Easter, why the Hell not?