Office Christmas Party (2016)11:37 AM
Party Like Your Job Depends on It.
🎄Blogmas: Day 7!🎄
Office Christmas Party is directed by Josh Gordon and Will Speck (Blades of Glory, The Switch) and stars Jason Bateman (The Gift, Horrible Bosses), Olivia Munn (Magic Mike, X-Men: Apocalypse), T.J. Miller (Cloverfield, Deadpool), Jennifer Aniston (Friends, Horrible Bosses), Kate McKinnon (Ghostbusters, Saturday Night Live) and Jillian Bell (22 Jump Street, The Night Before). "When the CEO tries to close her hard-partying brother's branch, he and his Chief Technical Officer must rally their co-workers and host an epic office Christmas party in an effort to impress a potential client and close a sale that will save their jobs" (IMDb, 2016). This film has kind of come out of no where but will it be like the usual awkward office christmas party or will it be one to remember?
Office Christmas Party is a fun film that I think achieves what it intends to do - it is one big party and features a pretty impressive ensemble cast. However, I don't think it is really a film you will remember and look back on 6 months from now - I don't even know if it is festive enough to be a film that you watch year on year. The trailers made me think this could be the next 'The Hangover' - I thought it looked that funny and that outrageous that it was going to become quite a unique Christmas classic. It unfortunately doesn't go as far as it could do but it's still fun and I did like this film and I would recommend it to someone who wanted to have a fun time.
This is a comedy film so the performances are not going to be award worthy but they are still fun and pretty good. Kate McKinnon was by far my favourite - her role was much bigger than I was expecting and I thought she stole every scene she was in. Honestly, I think there is an argument to be made that 2016 is the year of Kate McKinnon - she stole Ghostbusters, she stole Saturday Night Live and she won an Emmy - this girl is on fire. I was also impressed by the size of Jennifer Anniston's role - she plays basically the same character as she does in Horrible Bosses but I'm not complaining because she is good in that role. I would also just like to make a request for Jennifer Anniston to star in more films - she was in Mother's Day this year which doesn't really count as it was a paycheque gig and had such a large cast. However, I was disappointed by the size of Jillian Bell's role - she did not have many scenes at all - Bell is starting to become one of my favourite comedy stars so I was excited she was in this film but she didn't really get to do much. Her character was interesting though and had a few funny moments which is a plus. I couldn't find her on the cast list but a special mention must go to the lady who played the Uber driver - she reminded me of Melissa McCarthy and I hope Office Christmas Party puts her star on the rise. Now for the rest of the cast who didn't really make too much of an impression- they were good but they weren't too memorable - Jason Bateman, Olivia Munn and T.J. Miller - this is kind of strange as they are supposedly the three leads. I found T.J. Miller kind of annoying and trying too hard but Bateman and Munn were fun.
It could to the half way mark of this film and I started to worry as I hadn't laughed that much at all. However, all of the laughs do roll out towards the end of the film. The funniest character was definitely Mary (McKinnon) who had some excellent and hilarious one-liners. The scenes involving the Uber Driver and the name Carol were also hilarious. However, I do feel that this film could have been slightly funnier, especially during the first act. I do have to say though that the film was relatively intelligent with its jokes - it didn't introduce anything just for the sake of it, it always returned later and there were numerous running jokes which were effective.
Office Christmas Party is one of those films that suffers from not really having a purpose or a story - similar with Sisters - the whole film was just one big party. However, I thought Sisters worked because it was very funny, had likeable characters and the party itself had quite a sentimental feel to it. I don't think this narrative was as effective for Office Christmas Party - they were literally throwing the party to impress someone to save the company. On that note, I thought a little too much time was spent with Business talk - people go to the cinema to forget about work stresses not be reminded of them. The story does take an interesting yet random turn in the final act (like most comedy films I suppose) and it did provide some extra funny. Even though the story is definitely pretty lazy and generic, it does move at a fast pace - this definitely didn't feel like a 100 minute film.
I think this may be the final festive release of 2016 (forgive me if I'm wrong) but so far, I've dedicated a section of each review to inform you guys whether the film is festive or not. Office Christmas Party isn't the most festive of films but it is definitely suitable for this time year - Christmas is obviously a key theme but it isn't too in-your-face with it (that might be good for some people). However, I do think this would actually be quite an ironic but good film to see as an Office Christmas Party and then go to the pub. Maybe it will find an audience that do find it to be a new festive classic but for me, even though I did enjoy it, I won't be rushing to watch it Christmas 2017.
Office Christmas Party is a fluffy, thin and forgettable festive film that is a whole load of fun. The film is likeable and it is hard not to enjoy watching it. There are a fair amount of laughs but there could easily be more. Kate McKinnon steals the show with a really bizarre yet hilarious character. Jennifer Anniston and Jillian Bell also made the 'best' list. The rest of the cast do a nice job. It could have done with a heavier festive undertone but this is definitely a fun film that I would recommend to someone who needs a pick-me-up or someone who just loves Christmas.
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