So Holidays are here, and if you have young children I am sure you cannot wait for school to start up again. Well, the cinema is here to help; it can provide you with a brief respite, and possibly a secretive power nap. However, what is there to take your child to see? All the films look so shallow, vapid, and intensely annoying. Never fear, dear reader, for I will bravely chart the rocky waters of family entertainment to find you the film that won’t rot your brain out of your ears. The first film on the checklist is Dreamworks’ new animated film, Boss Baby.
Timothy Templeton is an only child and loves it. However, one day Tim is surprised when his parents bring back a be-suited infant who acts very suspiciously. Tim soon finds out that this baby can talk and has a mission to stop puppies from taking all the love away from babies, just as this new baby steals some of the love of Timothy’s parents away from him.
I went into Boss Baby with very low expectations. The trailers and promotional material didn’t go far into discarding me from my first impression that this was going to be an unfunny, one-note, lazy, kid’s film. Having said that I am surprised to say that I found this movie perfectly adequate. Yes, a parent isn’t going to get the same amount enjoyment out of this film as their child would, but for just another holiday release, it is one of the more bearable ones.
The plot is thin on the ground, and there are a couple of plot contrivances here and there, but this film was fill of charm and the story clips along at a thankfully quick pace. There are a few genuinely funny moments hidden among the slightly more crude toilet humour. Similarly, the design of the world, feels fresh and innovative, especially during the many fantasy set pieces. There is a timeless quality to the design that feels incredibly modern and also surprisingly reminiscent of the old Hanna-Barbera cartoons regarding the angular design.
Finally, Alec Baldwin deserves credit for carrying the film’s voice cast. His Boss Baby is sarcastic, cynical and remarkably entertaining, past the initial reveal that “Yes, that is Glen Gary Glen Ross’s Alec Baldwin voicing a baby in business attire”.
It also has an important message which is always good for a children’s film. It is about sharing and is specifically targeted at expectant siblings that are perhaps apprehensive about how this new member of the family will change the dynamic. It is not the high satire of current political administrations, but it is certainly something that needs to be explored. It does hit this message quite hard, and there are attempts to pull the heart strings that feel a bit disingenuous and sickly sweet.
Yes, it is very obvious that Boss Baby is not meant for me or adults for that matter, but I can say that it is possibly a film that will make parents not want to tear their hair out if they take their kids to see it this Easter.