Merry FN Christmas!
The only reason for any reasoning matter to have green-lit a second “Bad Santa” would be Academy Award winner Billy Bob Thornton. Seriously, can you think of another reason? It’s all about Thornton’s character (Willie Soke) stealing (no pun) the show, just like he did back in ’03. Yes, there’s Tony Cox (who’s a chuckling charm) as well as an intriguing tease with Academy Award, Golden Globe and Emmy-winner Kathy Bates joining in on the fun, but was “Bad Santa 2” necessary?
Fueled by cheap whiskey, greed and hatred, Willie teams up once again with his angry “munchkin” sidekick, Marcus (Cox), to knock off a Chicago charity on Christmas Eve. Along for the ride is ‘the kid’ – chubby and cheery Thurman Merman (Brett Kelly), now a 250-pound ray of virginal sunshine who brings out Willie’s s last strip of humanity. Mommy issues ensue when the pair are joined by Willie’s horrifying mother, Sunny Soke (Bates). A super butch-bitch, Sunny raises the bar for the gang’s ravenous ambitions, while somehow lowering the standards of criminal behavior.
Didn’t love it, didn’t hate it. This flick suffered the dreaded ‘S’ curse. 13 years to rehash what was done in 2003 isn’t a crime. However, unlike its witty, much more engaging predecessor (which ran evenly among story and hard hilarity) the sequel felt a bit dull. The plot forcefully took a back seat to the insults and harsh one-liners. As a fan of “Blue Comedy,” I totally had my share of crack-ups, but it didn’t feel complete. This one also had a major player missing — Bernie Mac! (R.I.P.) Overall, the cast and crude are a hit… Sadly, the narrative wasn’t as nourishing.
Grade: C+ / Genre: Sequel, Comedy / Rated: R / Run Time: 1:32
Starring: Billy Bob Thornton, Tony Cox, Kathy Bates, Brett Kelly
Directed by: Mark Waters (VIII)