Film Review by Jarred Tito
A titan of industry is sent to prison after she's caught for insider trading. When she emerges ready to rebrand herself as America's latest sweetheart, not everyone she screwed over is so quick to forgive and forget.
After seeing Melissa McCarthy in 'Spy', the action comedy where her character engages in unorthodox spy tactics to undermine an evil plan to overtake the world, my expectations of 'The Boss' were set very high.
Melissa McCarthy is one of Hollywood's true funny women. She is quick, quirky, and at times shocking. Her lightning fast quips and comedic timing is almost perfect. She is developing her own niche in the world of comedy who is quite comparable to the likes of top comedian Will Farrell. So, how did she perform in 'The Boss'?
As you would expect from a seasoned comedian, her comedic timing was superb. Like her performance in 'Identity Thief' where she worked against Jason Bateman, McCarthy is faced with the impossible task of redeeming her somewhat flawed childhood life. And I should mention at this time that her role in 'Identity Thief' was quite possibly her best. But, like so many other comedians who find themselves cast in recurring roles, McCarthy must be careful not to rest on her laurels as a comedian or she may find herself sitting alongside other Hollywood comics who find themselves in the forbidden territory of being typecast. Having said that, this film is funny. Although it follows a definite formula of near-wins and near-failures, I found myself following Michelle Darnell (McCarthy) as she clawed her way back from failure to success and with every McCarthy story, success is always reinterpreted as a moral success.
There are several interesting story threads that run through this uncomplicated plot.
Claire (Kristen Bell), Michelle Darnell's personal assistant, adds a tablespoon of moral values as she unwittingly unleashes Michelle Darnell's business fury on an unsuspecting bunch of Brownie girls - Darnell then handpicks the most thug-like teenage girls to ignite her new business idea which predictably does very well.
There are a couple of standout moments with other actors which added to the flavour of the movie, including Tyler Labine who plays a goofy support role - Mike, Claire's love interest and not so newcomer Ella Anderson did a fantastic role as dry, straight-playing daughter to Claire, who hits it off with Darnell. There are plenty of good laughs along the way, including the scene where her butler Tito assists in getting her teeth whitened. It's crude, it's rude, but it is funny. But for me the standout combination was with Michelle and Renault (Peter Dinklage) of 'Game of Thrones' fame. He plays the role of a devilishly evil dwarf mogul whose ambition is to ruin Darnell because of a romance wrong gone wrong. Yes things get a little weird between McCarthy and Dinklage. Need I say any more? It was good to see him in a less serious role again.
I laughed, never cried, was never as caught up in the story as I may have been at others - but it was certainly a funny film. Perhaps not McCarthy's best, and I certainly wouldn’t recommend it for a younger audience but certainly a lighter film with plenty of laugh out loud moments.
Releases: 14th April 2016
Duration: 99 minutes
Duration: 99 minutes
Starring: Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Bell, Peter Dinklage and Kathy Bates
Director: Ben Falcone (Tammy)
Second film written by star Melissa McCarthy and husband Ben Falcone, along with Groundlings friend, Steve Mallory.
The film was originally titled Michelle Darnell.
The third collaboration between Melissa McCarthy and Kathy Bates. They previously appeared together on Tammy (2014) and Mike & Molly (2010).
In the TV spot for this movie, it featured a cameo performance of a legendary WWE wrestler David Bautisa as one of the Dandilions mentors who get punched in the plums by Melissa's character.