After their adventures in the previous instalment, Dale (Charlie Day), Kurt (Jason Sudeikis) and Nick (Jason Bateman) decide to go into business for themselves with the Shower Buddy a kind of car wash for your shower. When Bert Hanson (Christoph Waltz) and his son Rex (Chris Pine) cause them to become hugely in debt, they devise a ridiculous kidnapping and extortion plan which they attempt, but give up when things don’t go to plan. Unfortunately for them, Rex has decided that it is a far better plan and blackmails them into going through with it – with him as a partner. And it gets ridiculous.
I just had a look at what I thought about he first film – I felt that it wasn’t enough story for a full film, but it was ok. Perhaps that is why I liked this one more – perhaps it had more plot, or something. At any rate, I did quite enjoy this one, with all of it’s filthy humour, and it was good to get a few callback characters like Dean ‘MF’ Jones (Jamie Foxx), Dave Harken (Kevin Spacey) and Dr Julia Harris, D.D.S. (Jennifer Aniston).
Three guys are mates, and all are in jobs with bosses that are abusive and appalling. Nick’s (Jason Bateman)boss is Dave Harken (Kevin Spacey), a man who is relentlessly cruel, mostly verbally. Kurt (Jason Sedeikis) loved his boss, Jack (Donald Sutherland) but when he suddenly passes away, the nightmare cocaine-addicted son, Bobby (Colin Farrell) steps in, but his plans involved prostitutes and running the company into the ground. And Dale (Charlie Day) is a strange little guy who is being sexually tormented by his dentist boss Dr Julia Harris (Jennifer Aniston). So, like Strangers on the Train, they decide that if they all kill each other’s boss, they can get away with it. But they are fools, so it goes wrong. But, of course, ultimately right.
It’s such a nod to The Hangover – three guys, one kind of cool, one sensible and straight-laced and the other a bit odd and irresponsible. I kind of liked it – well, I didn’t hate it. I liked bits… I did like that they had one of the bosses be a woman, and the idea of her doing the sexual harassment, and that it is clearly a power thing, which a lot of people forget in relation to sexual harassment. But, I felt that it was kind of too much story for a 98-minute film, but not quality enough for a longer film.
Surely it is hardly surprising that a film based on a self-help book is not that great. That much didn’t surprise me. I didn’t really expect it to be quite as misogynistic as it was. The women are awful to each other. The men are awful to the women. The women are awful to the men. Actually, maybe it’s not misogyny as such. Maybe it is just a bunch of horrible, horrible people.
Gigi (Ginnie Goodwin) is single and desperate, but keeps getting let down by men. She ends up adopting bartender Alex (Justin Long) as her go-to man for revealing the secrets of men – what they really mean when they say and do various things. Meantime, her colleague Beth (Jennifer Aniston) breaks up with her long-term partner Neil (Ben Affleck) because he will not marry her. Then wannabe singer Anna (Scarlett Johansson) is pursuing married man Ben (Bradley Cooper) at the advice of her best friend, Mary (Drew Barrymoore).
Some of the advice is good. But the film is not.