Review / ‘Bad Moms 2’ (MA) * and a half

THOSE three kings who came looking for somebody to receive their gifts of gold, myrrh and frankincense could have had no notion of the horror they were about to unleash on planet earth.

They became the progenitors of the plague of mercantile madness and behavioural excess that we now call Christmas. Before Christianity, northern-hemisphere folk gratefully celebrated the winter solstice. Little did they know!

For movie writing/directing team Jon Lucas and Scott Moore, Christmas 2017 means an expectation of wealth big time. In 2016, their “Bad Moms” raked in a cool $US113 million+. Telling what happens when their mothers arrive unannounced a week before Christmas, “Bad Moms 2” is an unremitting parade of clichés and kitsch as the grannies inflict their ideas about the meaning of Christmas and how to celebrate it.

It’s billed as a comedy. I saw it among a mere handful of early-bird patrons without hearing a single laugh. A larger audience, mostly women, sipped wine before going in to see it at a late-afternoon fundraiser session. Were they aghast at the emotional bullying that the grannies dished out? Probably. Did they get a buzz from the soft porn, gutter language and raunchy passages? They’re adults and shouldn’t have had any difficulties with frank language and actions. Were they bored by the unvarying arguments advanced for the grannies’ selfish behaviour? I’ll bet they were! Did they laugh their heads off? I expect they did. Or might that have been the wine talking?

What did I like about it? Susan Sarandon as a wild child whose adult daughter was following her lifestyle example. Peter Gallagher as the long-suffering and generous-spirited husband of a woman whose unremitting insecurities had turned her into a sweetly-cruel monster toward her daughter.

“Bad Moms 3″ seems inevitable. Easter, 2018 perhaps?

At all cinemas

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