Roar is the kind of song that gets you up in the morning. You charge around the house, hairbrush microphone in-hand, making mirrored eye contact with yourself while mumbling 90% of the lyrics, but really belting out that chorus. At precisely 8:15 you rush out the door and catch the bus to work, where you sit silently, and avoid eye contact at all costs. Horrible Bosses 2 follows the same trajectory — moments of ambitious fantasy spoiled by harsh reality.
But it’s still worth it.
When we rejoin Nick Hendrick, Kurt Buckman, and Dale Arbus, they’ve successfully moved on from their previous employers (in that they don’t have jobs) and have started a business. They’ve created the Shower Buddy, an all-in-one shower system designed to shave minutes off your morning routine. It’s pretty much a shopping channel dream. But they fumble their first promotional opportunity on a popular morning show thanks to minor product failure, overt sexual innuendo, and unintended racism. Afterwards, Nick, Kurt, and Dale commiserate in a bar, pondering their return to the cubicle. But that’s when they get the call.
And what better ringtone to set the tone for what happens next?
Enter Bert and Rex Hanson, a father-son team whose company, Boulder Stream, specializes in the manufacture of things that no one thought they needed. Bert, the patriarch of Boulder Stream, admires the boys’pull-themselves-up-by-the-boot-straps attitude and fuels their American Dream with a massive order. CueRoar.
But that dream ends with all the subtlety of a bucket of cold water to the face when Bert cancels the order with the intent of bankrupting their company, Nick-Kurt-Dale (say it fast), and picking it up for pennies on the dollar. Not ones to settle conflict in traditional ways, Nick, Kurt, and Dale devise a plan to kidnap the younger Hanson for ransom.
Because, as they discovered the first time around, they’re just not killers.
Unfortunately, they’re not really kidnappers either and the whole plan goes sideways with a nitrous-oxide incident that results in Rex Hanson taking advantage of the situation and effectively kidnapping himself.
As expected, things don’t go smoothly from this point but their plan is as entertaining as it is ineffective. The film does try and touch on some of the bigger issues of a class system, but never too seriously, or too critically, so don’t expect to come out with a greater understanding of workforce empowerment in America. But let’s be honest, if you’re going to see this movie, you’d probably be disappointed if they brought you down with reality. This is the movie equivalent of your song; so grab a hairbrush microphone, suspend your disbelief for a bit, and enjoy your time in front of the mirror before you have to rush out the door.