Office Christmas Party SPOILER-FREE Review
Office Christmas Party is a film that I didn't have very high expectations for. The trailers weren't overly funny to me. Sure, it was packed to the brim with amazing comedic talent, but the jokes in the trailers just didn't grab me. What did grab me was the incredible ensemble of cast members. Jennifer Aniston, Jason Bateman, T.J. Miller, Kate McKinnon, Rob Corddry-- these are all huge comedy names, and that's what really attracted this to this movie. While the trailers weren't too funny to me, I had faith in the talent behind it and that was my main excitement for the film. I had similar expectations for Why Him?. I didn't find the trailers overly funny, but I loved the people working on the movie. I caught an early screening of the movie, and loved it! You can read my review for that film here. So I was hopeful that I would have a similar experience with Office Christmas Party. And in short, I didn't. Office Christmas Party is a pretty bad movie, that is especially a disappointment due to the incredible talent involved in the film.
When CEO Carol (Aniston) threatens to close their branch on Christmas, Clay (Miller), Josh (Bateman) and Tracey (Olivia Munn) decide to throw a wild office Christmas party in order to convince a prestigious investor (Courtney B. Vance) to join the firm. But things quickly get out of hand.
I wasn't expecting an incredible story. I wasn't expecting this to be a 10/10, best film of the year kind of movie at all. I was just wanting a throw-away holiday movie that would make me laugh, and Office Christmas Party couldn't even deliver on that. Not only is its story and character development atrocious, but it's just not funny. That's the bottom line for me. Everything else in a comedy can be garbage, but if I laugh, then it's forgiven in my book. Looking at other comedies this year like Bad Santa 2 and Why Him?, the stories aren't very strong in those movies. The characters aren't fleshed out. But because they made me laugh, I walked out having been entertained. And with Office Christmas Party, I just wasn't. It goes for hard-R humor, but at times it's really reaching. I think I only laughed a few times throughout this movie, and they were chuckles at best.
Let's talk about the party itself, because that's what everyone is coming to this movie to see. For a film that's making this party its main selling point, it's rather lackluster. Sure, you have a few funny antics, but there's nothing that makes this special in any way. The party is crazy, but its ridiculousness doesn't exactly equate humor. It's just a bunch of random, nonsense sh*t that happens on screen, and it doesn't really result in entertainment. The comedic performances in this film are also lackluster. Jason Bateman is here for his paycheck. He doesn't really add anything to the movie. The same goes for Jennifer Aniston. Kate McKinnon plays another whimsical character, and while she was funnier in this than she was in Ghostbusters, she still didn't really do it for me. I love her in SNL, but her comedic talents haven't really translated into film for me lately. The funniest person in the movie is T.J. Miller, and even he isn't that funny. This is just a bland movie with a bunch of bland characters and bland, unfunny humor.
Overall, Office Christmas Party is about as stale as its title. It doesn't do anything innovative or new. It retreads the same humor that we've seen a thousand times, and it executes it poorly. The performances aren't very good, with many of the actors simply there to collect paychecks. T.J. Miller was the standout, and even he wasn't the best he's been. He was a million times funnier earlier this year in Deadpool. The party itself wasn't very funny. It was outrageous and crazy, but that doesn't inherently make it funny. The set-up to the party was boring, the party itself wasn't exciting, and the third act takes such an unnecessary turn that it becomes utterly ridiculous, and not in a good, comedic way. If you're looking for a funny, hard-R comedy, hold out for Why Him?. It's a far superior film, and it's better than wasting your money on this pointless movie. Office Christmas Party is going to be a movie I forgot I saw, and I'm going to be glad I forgot it. It's just not really worth your time. Go see Rogue One: A Star Wars Story if you want to be entertained. Hold out for Why Him? if you want a good comedy. Office Christmas Party just isn't worth it.
What do you think? Have you seen Office Christmas Party? Did you like the film? Leave your (spoiler-free) thoughts in the comments section below.
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