UK Release Date: 6th March 2015
Runtime: 91 minutes
Director: Ken Scott
Writer: Steve Conrad
Starring: Vince Vaughn, Dave Franco, Tom Wilkinson, Sienna Miller, James Marsden, Nick Frost, June Diane Raphael
Synopsis: After quitting his job in a rage, a businessman starts his own enterprise and finds himself competing for a deal with his former boss.
This has so far been a rather poor year for silver screen comedy. Films such as Mortdecai and The Wedding Ringer have failed to raise so much as a chuckle from either critics or audiences. Unfortunately, despite its talented cast, Unfinished Business does not break that deadlock.
Dan (Vince Vaughn) leaves his job after a row with boss Chuck (Sienna Miller) over commission. With fellow employees Mike (Dave Franco) and Tim (Tom Wilkinson) leaving alongside him, Dan decides to start his own company in competition with Chuck. After a year of poor fortunes, one big deal with investors Jim (James Marsden) and Bill (Nick Frost) could be the answer to their prayers – if they can close.
Vince Vaughn’s career has become something of a joke in the last decade. Once the bankable star of a handful of massive comedies, Vaughn is now almost synonymous with terrible, laugh-free star vehicles. It says an awful lot that 90-minute Google advert The Internship is his best recent movie.
| "I’m not crying. There’s just poison in my eyes."
Vaughn is terrible in Unfinished Business. But by far the worst thing about the whole sorry affair is that he drags capable performers Tom Wilkinson and Dave Franco down with him. Wilkinson, in particular, looks like he only got himself through the experience by thinking constantly of the paycheque.
Unfinished Business is just the latest in a string of comedies that work really hard for their R-rating in an attempt to seem edgy. The full-frontal male nudity and lazy toilet humour in the film does not come across as risky, or interesting, in any way, given that it has been old hat in adult comedies for years now. The fact that it’s also not packaged alongside anything that even resembles a decent joke is a huge problem.
The film is a showcase of masculine posturing, with very little room for female customers. Even Sienna Miller’s corporate titan, who should be a strong character, finds herself sidelined by the narrative, which is far more interested in the bumbling male fools.
| "The first rule is: show the client a good time."
All of the above would be fine if Unfinished Business was ever funny. However, despite a few solid observations, there’s never enough to it to bring much of a laugh. With such a solid cast in place, this should have been so much better.
Pop or Poop?
The latest in a long line of notable failures from Vince Vaughn, Unfinished Business is a comedy that never manages to raise much of a laugh from the audience.
The reliable cast fail to manufacture mirth from the script and the globe-trotting setting also provides little to laugh at.
There’s nothing worse than a comedy that doesn’t make you laugh. Except perhaps this, which isn’t even trying.
Do you agree with my review? Let me know in the comments section.