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A Bad Moms Christmas follows our three under-appreciated and over-burdened women as they rebel against the challenges and expectations of the Super Bowl for moms: Christmas. And as if creating a more perfect holiday for their families wasn't hard enough, they must do all of that while hosting and entertaining their own mothers. By the end of the journey, our moms will redefine how to make the holidays special for all and discover a closer relationship with their mothers.
Principal photography on the movie began on May 1, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. See more »
On Christmas morning Carla is home with her son and she's drinking from a big cup from RaceTrac - a gas station in the Southeast. The film supposedly took place in Chicago where no RaceTrac gas stations exist. Movie was filed in Atlanta where RaceTrac is headquartered. See more »
Still Got Some Laughs but the Quality Drops the Second Time Around
The reason to check out the original Bad Moms was the chemistry between Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn. They had funny material to work with but without their individual performances, the movie would have been a decent yet forgettable film. The directors Jon Lucas and Scott Moore know this and rely on the cast to carry them through the sequel (to the point where the movie suffers for it). The funniest and strongest part of this movie is that the 3 leads refused to phone it in. They carry this movie through some of the bumpier sections of the plot and keep you interested in where they will go next. Hahn is still the funniest of the original trio but Bell and Kunis still left me giggling. A Bad Moms Christmas brings in Christine Baranski, Susan Sarandon and Cheryl Hines as Ruth, Isis and Sandy respectively as the moms of the 3 lead actresses. They're all amusing for short moments and they all manage to be decent despite some iffy material (I got tired of Ruth being racist towards Jessie but that's as offensive as it got). Jay Hernandez was given almost nothing to do except to be a prop and Peter Gallagher is a background character until the last 10 minutes.
If this movie wasn't written by the same writer/director team, I would claim that they just ripped the first movie off. But it is the same team so all I can say is that this is a lazy script. The worst part of this movie is how the plot is so recycled from the first movie. They did add the 3 grandmas but other than that, they just did the same thing with an Xmas theme. The families are ungrateful, the moms are burned out and they throw tradition to the wind and cut loose to decidedly mixed results. I'm not saying Bad Moms was the deepest comedy on the market but they did a much better job making the characters feel realistic and their dilemmas were familiar and believable. This movie is sorely lacking those qualities and although the problems aren't unrealistic (the Hahn/Sarandon conflict and kernels of Kunis and Baranski's could happen) they're resolved in a rushed and simple manner just like any sitcom.
Although they bring in some new characters, if you're hoping to see supporting characters return from the last movie you might be disappointed. As I said before, Jessie is a non-character in this movie and other than some insulting comments from Ruth, there's no conflict with his character. Amy's kids completely forgot the lessons that they learned in the last one, they go back to being self-centred and bratty (they do give a reason but their complete inability to step up for Amy was annoying). They bring back one of the more underrated characters from Bad Moms for a cameo and I thought she nailed it but her appearance in the sequel amounts to just a couple of minutes of screen time.
The last and most important question is was the movie funny? Despite the fact that the plot and the character development was lacking I have to say yes. The movie goes long stretches of repeating the same jokes from the original (the montage of the moms going crazy in a public place) or they run jokes that were initially funny into the ground (pretty much any bit with Justin Hartley goes on way too long). But I did get some good laughs in and while I wasn't 100% entertained, I never had to wait too long before a throwaway line would at least make me chuckle. Most of my favourite scenes were just Amy, Kiki and Carla shooting the breeze about how tough being a mom is and sharing their horror stories about it.
This was a hard movie to grade. I liked the performances and I did laugh but they rehashed the plot and the emotional beats of the movie feel forced. If they intend to keep treating this as a franchise, my advice would to be to meditate on the next one a little longer instead of pushing it out so fast. I saw this with a friend and her criticism was how this seemed like an enormous cash grab. I still think the original is a solid raunchy comedy for both sexes and while this one still is funny, it falls short of Bad Moms. I'll split the difference and give it a 6/10.
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