Director: Mark Waters
Where Ho Ho Ho meets No No No – the Bad Santa sequel wastes no time revealing it should never have happened; not only that there was no valid (ie artistic) reason for it to happen. It happened, we know why, the first movie was a runaway hit. It wasn’t expected to be – but it worked. Took in a lot of money, against what it cost to make, featured an in-form Billy Bob Thornton and the directing skills of Terry Zwigoff. As well as Bernie Mac (R.I.P) and enough decent jokes. Look, I’m not saying it was great – but I do remember laughing when I saw it in the cinema, right time/right place – a decade and a half ago, on holiday, with mates, back in another life…
Now we get Thornton’s same character – utterly unlikeable still. But over a decade on, caught up in development hell no doubt, there isn’t the just-smart-enough script; there’s a horribly joke-less but trying-to-hard script in place. And more unlikeable characters. And nearly nothing for them to do.
The longer it rolls on the more it feels like an advert/reminder for the idea that you can’t bottle lightning twice, you shouldn’t make a sequel. Also there has to be some added rule that the longer between takes the worse…surely that’s the (usual) case with movies right?
How Christina Hendricks can go from a half-dozen seasons of Mad Men to this will be pondered as one of the great ghastly career-arcs of all-time.
Well anyone involved in this movie should consider it their own personal nadir, even if it’s a cast or crew member that hadn’t ever worked before.