Office Christmas Party
Josh Gordon and Will Speck's Office Christmas Party is an energetic jolt of Holiday cheer, blended thoroughly with R-rated humor and an ensemble of exceptional performances, including T.J. Miller, Jason Bateman, Jennifer Aniston and Kate McKinnon.
Josh Gordon and Will Speck‘s Office Christmas Party is that unlikely Holiday ensemble comedy that works so damn well. It’s an enjoyable R-rated romp that’s insanely unrealistic in its delivery of one of the wildest parties ever, yet it’s authentic in its approach to Christmas and the spirit behind it.
Branch owner Clay Vanstone (T.J. Miller) is backed up into a corner this Holiday season, with his Grinch-like sister (and temporary company CEO) Carol (Jennifer Aniston) demanding that he cancel the company Christmas party, suspend bonuses and possibly layoff several dozen employees if things don’t turn around.
And by turning around I mean if he doesn’t close a large deal with Walter Davis (Courtney B. Vance) by the end of the day.
This leads Clay to throw an even larger company party, with the hopes of inviting Walter and really showing him what the company is all about.
Clay seeks the help of his co-worker and friend Josh (Jason Bateman) to ensure that this is the largest and most spirited of Holiday events, despite the constant bickering from HR rep Mary (Kate McKinnon).
The rest is history as Office Christmas Party goes down as one of the most unoriginal film titles to have ever be conceived, despite mostly being a wall-to-wall successful comedy that manages to make you laugh nonstop and learn a bit about its characters in the process.
Office Christmas Party features a stacked list of comedic actors that all turn in mostly golden performances that range from extremely effective and funny — like Jillian Bell and Kate McKinnon, to mostly background noise — like Rob Corddry.
Jason Bateman and Olivia Munn are respectively the most “normal” of the bunch, which leads to less jokes, but more relatable situations, while T.J. Miller and Jennifer Aniston bounce off each other in perfect comedic unison as the rich siblings that seem to have the most opposite of outlooks on life.
Office Christmas Party isn’t just a film about an office Christmas party, but instead the importance of an office and the relationships created between the hours of nine to five. It’s that glimpse at a “boring” office job, only this time it’s not so boring as employees interact and engage with each other as friends and even family to some degree.
It may not be the deepest of films, but its absurd party-throwing antics are deemed acceptable because of the film’s ability to root the characters and their relationships in a believable and admirable manner.
The film wastes very little time picking things up and getting the story from point A to point B, which simply means that Office Christmas Party lives up to its forward title and then some.
Watching the film has given me some great ideas for future parties, not to mention a solid list of ” don’ts” that I will most-likely never forget.
Directors Josh Gordon and Will Speck have managed to wrestle all of the comedic talent into a perfectly-balanced film that highlights all their strengths and rarely shows any of their weaknesses. I applaud the film for being able to achieve so much, with a somewhat simplistic concept, without ever truly fumbling or misstepping in any real way that would cripple the film and its humor.
Office Christmas Party is the perfect Holiday film to checkout this season and one that I will enjoy revisiting again and again as the years come and go.