Film Review: Though cute and clever, “The Boss Baby” bores

Grade: C

It’s not often that you see a movie that was based off the premise of a children’s book, but when it does happen, it’s surely something to pay attention to. DreamWorks Animation debuted Tom McGrath’s film “The Boss Baby” in theaters recently across the United States. With a dazzling and popular cast and a clever plot objective, this one will seem promising all the time while you are watching it, however it is not until after the movie that you might finally realize that it’s just no good at all.

The film brings in a lot of notable celebrities to star in the main roles, including Alec Baldwin as the titular character, The Boss Baby, Tobey Maguire as Timothy Templeton, the narrator and Steve Buschemi as Francis E. Frances, the CEO of Puppy Co. Jimmy Kimmel, the notable host of the ABC late-night talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live! and the 89th Academy Awards, voices Ted Templeton and Lisa Kudrow, who was well known for her role as Phoebe Buffay on Friends, voices his wife.

The story is centered around the storytelling by an adult Timothy Templeton, elaborating on the time when he was seven years old and living a happy life with his two parents, envisioning that the three of them would live joyously forever together. This dream of his is interrupted by The Boss Baby, who shows up at his house in a taxi and is announced to be Timothy’s little brother. From then on, it is learned that The Boss Baby is a secret agent who is fighting in the secret war between babies and puppies, which, for some, it can be hard to take sides on.

“The Boss Baby” shows plenty of promise and draws people in with the clever slogan “Born Leader” heading it’s theatrical release posters. It definitely provides the laughs that a good animated film would do, too; it just fails to execute on multiple fronts, unlike other Dreamworks animated films, like everyone’s favorite “Shrek.” This is because of the nature of the beast. Weighing too much into making it funny can draw away from the development of a unique story and this one seems utterly predictable. The star-studded cast definitely makes this one worthy of going to see in theaters, but it’s inexplicably dry for such a creative work.

The film faced a massive premiere rescheduling affair when it was pushed back several times until it finally opened on March 31, taking the place of the premiere of “Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie.” It’s hard to tell how that one would have fared against “The Boss Baby,” but if you are looking for a rebound movie after going to see this current one, perhaps go see “Captain Underpants” which debuts on June 2.

There is some consideration for a possible sequel to the film that would potentially be written by the same screenwriter, Michael McCullers and include the tentative title “The Bossier Baby.” Until then, feel free to check this one out in theaters and see what you make of it.

Nathaniel is the Culture Editor and is a fourth-year journalism and business administration student at the University of Maine. He have been writing for The Maine Campus since November of 2014, covering everything from community events to films.

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