Quick Hit: This new generation of a “Bad” movie really has nothing new to add to the picture, but may hit home for some sets of parents.
There are some movies that you just dread watching. I wasn’t really excited when I found out we were doing this one (I believe per a request from a reader – see, we do it even when we don’t want to), but I gritted through it. It’s not necessarily the subject matter – I’ve liked certain “Bad” movies – aka Bad Santa had its appeals, as did Bad Teacher, and even Bad Grandpa had its moments where it strayed into the light. There was a lot of negative hype on this movie by some reviewers I trust, and so I moved forward cautiously.
My caution was well-founded, because Bad Moms isn’t a movie I would whole-heartedly recommend. However, it’s not a movie I would whole-heartedly recommend you stay away from either. What happens here is a middle of the road comedy with sexist undertones (from both sides) that has a little bit to say about parenting.
(played by the always wonderful Kathryn Hahn) and Kiki (played by the equally wonderful Kristen Bell). Side note – I honestly enjoyed these two characters way more than Amy. Anyways, from there, a “Bad Moms” pledge is made – they don’t have to do everything for their kids, let them figure some stuff out for their own.
This was one of the main points I liked about the movie. When the Amy’s kids ask their mom where breakfast is, she replies that they’ll have to make it themselves. This shows just how spoiled these kids are, because they’ve probably never fathomed the idea of doing something for themselves. I grew up in a rather independence-driven household, which I think set me on the right path quickly – I learned to do things myself and became a functioning adult that much more quickly. If this movie would have continued to focus on the children and how they grew, along with how Amy grew (and consequently focused on the development of the other women and their families in the story), the movie would have been better, but that isn’t the road we signed up for (based on the title). Instead, we get to see Mom debauchery, played out in slo-mo.
When the moms are later proclaiming their fierce love for their children, it’s harder to believe. Trust me on this – I have two kids. I know how terrible they can be, and sometimes you just can’t believe you helped in the creation of the devil spawn, but you love them. In the end though, you just don’t feel the love for the kids like you did before.
I will put out a warning – the movie is vulgar and filled with drinking, references to drugs, and plenty of language (which is mostly used as an excuse to be funny). These things don’t bug me in the slightest, but I wanted to warn anyone that had a problem with these things. The comedy is there throughout, especially if you’re the parent of a tiny human. My final problem with the movie was that it was terribly sexist. To state that women can only fit into the role of “overworked mother” or “sex-crazed divorced lady” is terrible. Not only did it hit women in this way, but the male characters were offensive. Not every dad is a man-child. Not every male millennial office worker is a dummy who doesn’t want to work.
*Breathes in, Breathes out* I feel better.
Final note to touch on some things I hit briefly earlier. Kiki and Carla are much more interesting. Though I didn't particularly like the arc that Kiki had (going from overworked to overbearing), Bell did a great job of convincing me that she was a mom at the edge of her rope. She even tuned down her normally made-up with some convincing low make-up scenes (Still beautiful either way - most women don't need makeup) (no one else in the movie can say this, despite claiming hangovers and such). Carla was the funniest one throughout, frequently stealing the scenes with one-liners.
This review may seem overwhelmingly negative, but that’s just because there were chances for the movie to be better than it was. Overall, I’m going to give it a buoyed up “C-“. Thanks to Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn for saving the film.
For more on this, check out IMDB.
"All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy"