March 10, 2015
Frankly, as optimistic as I can be, I think I knew better before I went in. Still, I felt like going to a movie and this is the one I ended up with a ticket to. Sure, I hoped to be surprised by something moderately entertaining, but there I was checking my watch and trying to map out how much of it was left. I was pretty close, so I guess there is that.
Unfinished Business kicks off with a bit taken straight out of Jerry Maguire. He gets up, quits his job and invites anyone there to join him on his new endeavor. He ends up with a guy well past retirement age (Tom Wilkinson) and a kid with questionable experience (Dave Franco). We then follow them as they go on a business trip to get the almighty handshake deal done on their first lucrative venture. Then everything goes wrong.
It is all remarkably dull. I am not even sure why I am taking the time to write this, outside of perhaps warning you from seeing it, but I would never do that and considering the weekend box office, it looks like most everyone else already knows as well. The business they are in is something of a joke itself, selling metal shavings or some such nonsense. The rest is forced, manufactured and not at all organic or genuinely funny.
The funny thing about the entire endeavor is that the parts that work are more relationship drama than comedy and never really pay off. They are the scenes of him interacting with his family and realizing the toll his absence is having on them and his inability to be there to help his children cope with growing up stuff, bullies, being bullied, and being yourself, and the like. Yes, those topic have been done before and better, but for a fleeting moment, his movie felt like it had actual characters.
Beyond that, the only character I really liked was Dave Franco, whose simpleton was actually kind of funny and oddly understandable. Nick Frost was also decent in a limited role, he was somewhat wasted, but he does have an impact. On the other hand Tom Wilkinson, an actor I like, is wasted in a thankless role that is more of a punchline than anything. Finally Vince Vaughn, he was just flat here. Granted he has not really been on for awhile, but he looked tired and bored here.
Simply put, Unfinished Business is just that, unfinished. It goes nowhere fast and I never felt any reason to care about them. The laughs are not there, the characters are non existent, and it is really boring. Yes, I knew this going in and still I went. What does that say about me? Don’t answer that.
Posted by Christopher Beaumont at 3/10/2015 09:23:00 PM
Labels: 2010s, 2015, Comedy, Dave Franco, Movie Review, Theatrical Release, Tom Wilkinson, Vince Vaughn
Chris has been an avid movie watcher for decades, getting into the writing game in 2004. Since that time he has contributed to a number online publications as well as running CriticalOutcast.com. In addition to movies, Chris is a big fan of music, particularly metal, and will never give up hope on his beloved Mets.