Office Christmas Party is a 2016 American Christmas comedy film directed by Will Speck and Josh Gordon and written by Justin Malen and Laura Solon, based on a story by Jon Lucas and Scott Moore. The film stars an ensemble cast, including Jason Bateman, Olivia Munn, T. J. Miller, Jillian Bell, Vanessa Bayer, Courtney B. Vance, Rob Corddry, Sam Richardson, Randall Park, Kate McKinnon and Jennifer Aniston, and was released on December 9, 2016 by Paramount Pictures. It received mixed reviews and has grossed $114 million worldwide. The Ying Yang Twins also contributed to the soundtrack with the song “Deck da Club”.
When the CEO (Jennifer Aniston) tries to close her hard-partying brother’s branch, he (T.J. Miller) and his Chief Technical Officer (Jason Bateman) 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.
I remember watching the trailer for this around this time last year thinking that this was going to be one of the funniest comedies of the year and another much needed return to form for much different Christmas movies, like I was looking at this hoping for another Krampus or The Night Before, just a Christmas movie that doesn’t go the cliché holiday movie route and actually does something different.
Finally, I’ve sat down, I’ve watched the movie and does Office Christmas Party do that? Um…….kind of.
It’s not a bad movie but it’s very much a Christmas version of Project X mixed with elements of The Night Before, it’s like, “hey, we’ve got this all-star ensemble cast, let’s just throw shit at the wall and see what sticks.”
There is no real motivation here, it would’ve been easy to just have a movie about the world’s most insane Christmas party and just go nuts but they throw in so much stuff in this plot that they took something that should’ve been so simple and easy to understand and made into a plot contriving mess, I mean, come on, just give us something simple but unique, be like The Night Before, they took a simple concept but made it unique in terms of the style of humor they went for to make it one of the best Christmas movies of recent memory.
Here, you do have some moments here that do get some laughs but not those laughs that take you by surprise like in Night Before or, hell, even Krampus had some funny moments that caught me off guard. Here, you can see the jokes coming from a mile away, there’s little creativity or surprise and by the end, you’re just like “wow, this was so underwhelming.”
And the actors are trying, this is a really solid cast they’ve enlisted here but there’s just nothing for them to work with.
Office Christmas Party had every bit of potential to be another Night Before and take us completely by surprise and just be this straight up laugh-out-loud comedy but it just never delivers on those promises, the acting is fine and some of the jokes get decent laughs but overall, I really came out of this movie very disappointed. I felt like I got screwed out of something that should’ve been a lot funnier, this should’ve been another Blades Of Glory, directed by the same guys who did this movie, where it took me completely by surprise by being funny in ways that surprise me, this movie did none of that. I will say that this Christmas, you’re better off avoiding this office party easily.
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