9 April 2016 | Screen_Blitz
Melissa McCarthy steals the show by only a short shot
Melissa McCarthy has had plenty of ups and downs in her career. It seems in recent years she has gone back and forth from landing in hilarious roles to disappointing roles, her last major role being the action comedy 'Spy' from last year. She has often stolen the show in films directed by Paul Feig, 'Bridesmaids' and 'The Heat' to be more specific, but seems to slop in other roles. This film marks her second collaboration with her husband director Ben Falcone, the man behind the critically hammered 'Tammy' which starred McCarthy as the titular character. In this film, McCarthy plays Michelle Darnell, a chairwoman of a billion dollar company with her best friend Claire (played by Kristen Bell), a single mother of a pre-teen daughter Rachael (played by Ella Anderson), working by her side. In the process, she's made enemies with her former lover Renault (played by Peter Dinklage) after taking his position as manager, and he has vowed revenge against her ever since. After a botched interview with a television personality, Michelle is arrest for insider trading and sent to prison for six months. Upon release, Michelle stuck on the streets with her assets wiped clean, her home on foreclosure, and with nobody to turn to but Claire and her daughter who move her into their house in attempt to get her back on her feet.
For the past several years, McCarthey has proved her gift of comedic talent, and this movie does not fail to show it, but she certainly doesn't embrace her full potential in her smart-mouthed role here. What good does she bring to this movie exactly? Well, she doesn't fail bring on some occasional laughter enough to distract you from the thinly written script, and her comedic chemistry with Kristen Bell works, but the jokes don't always hit home. McCarthy tries desperately on bringing out laughter through her shamelessly vulgar dialogue, some of which in the presence of elementary school-aged Ella Anderson. In some scenes, the jokes work, and leave a fair number of people in my theater laughing. In other scenes, they tend to come off as bold and mean-spirited, or otherwise rather forced. A lot of it begins when her character volunteers for Kristen Bell's daughter's Girl Scout. As shown in the trailer, one scene features a violent street brawl between dozens of young-aged girls, a scene where we sit through little children engage in slow motion fist fights, throw each other against cars, karate kick each other in the face, etc. Apparently we are supposed to believe this is funny when it really just comes off as cruel and makes you feel guilty for laughing, if you happen to do so. As the most of the fun and hilarity take place during the first hour, the film completely drops the ball during the second hour and laughs come to a halt. That is when Peter Dinklage begins consuming some major screen time. This actor is shown to have comedic potential, but sadly it doesn't work. The jokes he shoots out never land and his comedic chemistry with McCarthy falls completely flat.
The biggest accolade The Boss manages to achieve is being slightly funnier and more fun to watch director Ben Falcone's previous film 'Tammy'. Overall, this definitely doesn't sit on the ladder of Melissa McCarthy's best works, not even close. She and Kristen Bell manage to steal the show here, but only by a short shot. This is comedy that will please mostly fans of Melissa McCarthy, but leave others with a cold shoulder.