Movie Review: THE BOSS. Starring Melissa McCarthy

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theboss.jpg 2016) **
Directed by Ben Falcone

Starring: Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Bell, Peter Dinklage

Review by Gilbert Seah

THE BOSS is yet another nasty male comedy in which the male is replaced by the fairer sex. Melissa McCarthy seems to have cornered this market with the nasty girls comedies like BRIDESMAIDS, TAMMY, THE HEAT and her most successful SPY. But SPY, THE HEAT and BRIDESMAIDS were directed by the talented Paul Feig whereas THE BOSS and TAMMY fare into McCarthy’s not-so-successful territory. But she does manage a few laughs though, to her credit.

Michelle Darnell is an orphan. She is returned from adoption to the orphanage just too many times. This gives the girl an incentive to become ‘someone’ and not let anybody drag her down. Orphan Darnell morphs into Melissa McCarthy, super successful female businesswoman and 47th richest (why 47th?) in the whole world. But a former business partner, Renault (Peter Dinklage) takes her down with insider trading. After serving a prison sentence, she forces herself on her former personal assistant, Claire (Kristen Bell) whose daughter Rachel (Ella Anderson) she learns to grow very fond of. Michelle ends up starting a new business from Claire’s delicious brownies recruiting Rachel’s schoolmates in the process.

THE BOSS is pure McCarthy comedy. The only character in the story providing the laughs is her character, Darnell. Everyone else, are her straight men (or women as the case may be). Non-fans of McCarthy should stay away. At least in SPY, Jason Statham generated laughs playing against type. The only character that provides a few laughs besides Darnell is the Kathy Bates, Ida Marquette character. Unfortunately, there is not enough of Bates, her character last seen riding away on her horse, Butter.

There are, noticeably no jokes in this film and in her last (SPY) that poke fun at McCarthy’s weight. In fact this point is so obvious that her costume designer has not once allowed McCarthy’s neck to be shown on screen, making McCarthy’s outfits looking a bit weird. Also noticeable is Darnell questioning her prodigy, Claire as to the length of time she had sex. Nothing is mentioned of herself.

THE BOSS does have its hilarious segments such as the girl fight between the Darnell Darlings and the Daffodil Girls or the beginning show when Darnell goes on stage strutting her stuff. The Dardell character is a foul-mouthed, obnoxious and loud person. So, it is not surprising that the film’s best moments has her pitting these qualities against a super-bitch -mother, Helen (Annie Mumolo) who becomes a rival in the brownie business.

But the bits trying to insert some action into the film like the swordfight at the end do not work well. There are a lot of comedic segments (the leg tanning; the bra adjustment/shoving) involving McCarthy spewing vulgarities non-stop. Whether these are funny depends on ones individual taste.

Still, THE BOSS is a film with a lazy script based on a tried formula – obnoxious person making good using his/her bad qualities. THE BOSS is essentially just made up of a series of skits with the loose theme, banging on McCarthy’s draw to make the movie.

 

 

 

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