Monday, April 10, 2017

[Review] The Boss Baby


Oh, The Boss Baby... The trailer alone sparked a series of pertinent questions. Is it a cruel joke? Some kind of bizarre experiment? An insult to animation? A Trumpian allegory? A punched ticket to bad movie hell? I had to see it.

Timmy (voiced by Miles Christopher Bakshi) is a perfectly content only-child, happily being raised by his loving parents (Jimmy Kimmel and Lisa Kudrow). Then... along comes... THE BOSS BABY (voiced by Alec Baldwin), suit & tie and all, primed to mess up Timmy's adolescent life.

Okay first of all, maniacal babies that talk like adults aren't in style anymore. They're creepy. They're obnoxious. They should be fired. And it's been done so many times before--from long-gone Superbowl commercials to Stewie from "Family Guy" (is that show still going?). Not to mention, the initial premise here is nearly identical to that one "Rugrats" episode where Angelica has a nightmare about getting a new baby brother and the thing turns out to be an absolutely despicable, conniving monster. Now that--that was scary. And memorable. And haunting. And funny.

This--this isn't funny. Not even in the so-bad-it's-good way. And not even because the humor misses or falls flat. What's weird is that the film doesn't really seem to be trying to be funny at all. It's just kind of there. Like an old poopy diaper. The idea of it, for better or worse, might be slightly funny from afar, but once you get up close and actually witness it, it's just a small pocket of waste and stench that isn't necessarily anything out of the ordinary. Unappealing, but also a part of life.

The film is essentially a run-of-the-mill romp about new sibling jealousy taken to extreme and wildly hallucinatory levels. The plot's second half embarks on a turn that manages to be both nonsensical and formulaic. It's so middle-of-road. Not good enough to embrace. Not bad enough to embrace either. So, The Boss Baby isn't quite the abomination everyone anticipated, but it's still pretty crappy.

( 5/10 )

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