A Bad Moms Christmas (2017)

Welcoming as a lump of coal in your stocking

Director: Scott Moore, Jon Lucas
Running Time: 104 Minutes
Starring: Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell, Kathryn Hahn, Christine Baranski, Cheryl Hines, Susan Sarandon, Jay Hernandez, Justin Hartley, Peter Gallagher, Oona Laurence, Emjay Anthony

In 2016, directors Scott Moore and Jon Lucas delivered a wonderful little surprise with Bad Moms. The film acted as a love letter to mothers everywhere, and what they go through for us all. The sequel carries on many of the ideas, such as how the hectic life of being a mother continues tenfold during the festive season, as well as adding the difficulties of being with your parent, when you are also a parent. However, these elements feel like a rarity, with the focus being more on the less believable, and rather cartoonish moments.
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Amy, Kiki and Carla (Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell & Kathryn Hahn) are all feeling over-burdened, as their own mothers (Christine Baranski, Cheryl Hines & Susan Sarandon) arrive for the holidays. They choose to rebel against the pressures and challenges of creating the perfect festive season.

One gets the impression this was rushed to be made, in an effort to strike while the iron is hot. In doing so, the filmmakers forgot to include actual jokes into the proceedings. This results in lazy moments of children swearing, numerous mentions of genitalia, and the irritatingly exacerbated nature of the new moms. It's one thing to show off Cheryl Hines as a clingy mother, but another to have her sit and watch while her daughter gets intimate with her husband. If anything, her mother is depicted as quite frightening.

In spite of the less than plausible scenarios these characters are a part of, the cast deliver a believable nature to their relationships with one another. You're never left doubting how much these characters truly love one another, as the sweet moments are well handled. Special mention is deserved for Kathryn Hahn and Justin Hartley, who sell their unconventional romance pretty well.

A Bad Moms Christmas is a festive rehash of the first film, turning up the cartoonish elements at the expense of the jokes. The terrific cast do their best, but can't overcome the lacklustre material. If one is looking for a comedy more touching, humorous, and in the vein of this films predecessor, they would be better off seeking out Girls' Trip.

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