It’s good to be bad
BAD MOMS (MA15+)
Directors: Jon Lucas, Scott Moore Starring: Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell, Kathryn Hahn, Christina Applegate, Jay Hernandez, Jada Pinkett Smith Verdict: Raise kids. Raise hell. Not necessarily in that order
ATTENTION malcontent modern mothers everywhere: this is your The Hangover.
You know full well that all those swinging, swaggering single guys have had all that movie misbehaving to themselves for far too long.
Therefore, at the very least, Bad Moms represents a noble attempt to tip the balance back in favour of ladies who just don’t give a damn.
After all, Melissa McCarthy has been flying this flag pretty much on her own ever since Bridesmaids.
It’s about time she had some backup. (And after the recent dual misfires of The Boss and Ghostbusters, a well-earned break.)
So if you’re part of the target demographic, and need a night out with the girls sooner rather than later, then Bad Moms will deliver what you’re after, no questions asked.
However, if you are not a woman who fits the above description, then Bad Moms’ appeal immediately becomes more selective. Put it this way: you’ll find Sausage Party much more inviting.
The set-up here is basic – think Mean Girls, only a generation and a failed marriage or two later – but moderately effective.
Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn star as mums to high-schoolers who have had enough of the rigid rules enforced by a politically correct PTA committee (spearheaded by a vigilant viper played by Christina Applegate).
Rebellion against the stuck-up status quo is the only option for the trio, who are each tired and emotional enough to know it’s high time some hours were shaved off the 24/7 parenting demands thrust upon them.
To be honest, there are no wheels being reinvented by Bad Moms, which gradually loses the courage of its convictions, and gains a mile-wide sentimental streak by the close.
Nevertheless, it is twice the movie that lamentable AbFab thing out now turned out to be, and far funnier.
While Kunis does a fine job of anchoring Bad Moms – her inherent likability buys the movie some time after a sluggish start – the best lines and scenes go to the maverick presence of Hahn, a seasoned character actor who seizes her chance at a lead role with zinger-tastic aplomb.