“The Boss Baby”: A Uniquely Unfunny Experience

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“The Boss Baby” is directed by Tom McGrath and stars Alec Baldwin, Miles Cristopher Bakshi, Steve Buscemi, and Jimmy Kimmel.  The movie is about a boy named Tim who must deal with a new baby brother, only this baby has a suit and acts very differently than normal, and it turns out his baby brother needs Tim’s help with a super secret mission to save babies everywhere.

This was a film that I was not all that excited for, as the trailers made this film look pretty generic as a whole.  Still, the premise had some potential, and Alec Baldwin as a baby could bring some laughs, so while the ceiling felt low, I came in hoping to be surprised.

The Good

Alec Baldwin is easily the best part of the film as the boss baby himself, as his voice work brings nearly every single laugh that this movie has to offer.  Baldwin nails the professional infant role to a tee, and is able to make some genuinely funny moments out of nothing solely on his vocal abilities.  Baldwin is what allows most of this movie to survive, and I thoroughly enjoyed what he brought to the table.

I can definitely respect some of the unique filmmaking choices that were made throughout this film.  While they don’t always work as well as they could, I did not expect the storytelling style of this movie to be as original as it was.  For something that felt like it was going to be incredibly formulaic, which it still was in some aspects, there are some seriously bold approaches when it comes to the plot, and I have to give some kudos to director Tom McGrath for not playing it totally safe.

This movie has two really great heartfelt moments, one of which being right at the beginning, and the other being at the very end.  The opening scene was just something that made me happy to watch, and it allowed the film to start on the right foot, while the end was something that I also just couldn’t help but smile at, as it was incredibly sweet and heartfelt.

The Bad

The movie may have started and ended strong, but there’s a whole lot going on in the middle that just did not pay off.  Much of the humor that is attempted here is only made for the smallest of small children, as aside from a few Baldwin zingers, the comedy is simply not well-written.

Like I said, this is not a run-of-the-mill Dreamworks comedy, as this plot takes some different methods in its storytelling, but different is not always good.  Sometimes, these risks worked and that got some surprisingly good results.  Most of the time, however, these moves made the plot get incredibly confusing and I truly lost all sense of what was actually going on.  This is a film made for kids, but Pixar has shown for decades now that this doesn’t mean the story has to be strictly childish.

I believe that I understand what the director was going for with much of this movie taking place solely from a seven-year-old’s perspective.  In theory, this is an interesting idea, but in practice this simple idea makes the movie fall apart at the seams.  The humor, the plotline, and the animation are all completely geared for those ages seven and under, and that took me out of the film almost entirely by the concluding moments.

Conclusion

“The Boss Baby” benefits greatly from Alec Baldwin’s voice work, but creativity can only get you so far when the humor isn’t there to back it up.  Much of this film is, quite frankly, not very funny and confusing to watch, as “The Boss Baby” aims high, but ends up being a movie that will please the youngest of audiences and not many others.

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Get tickets and showtimes for “The Boss Baby” here

What did you think of “The Boss Baby”?  Comment below with your thoughts.


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