The Boss Baby
May 15, 2018
(After the intro, NC is in his usual spot, and his head is resting on his hand, fingers drumming, as if wondering if he did something he shouldn't have)
NC: (listlessly) Hello, I'm the Nostalgia Critic, I remember it so you don't have to... (pause) I really shouldn't have reviewed The Emoji Movie, because that just opened up the floodgates for more current crap!
NC (vo): I mean, I know a while ago, I said not everything I've reviewed had to be nostalgic, but I do like it to have some sort of nostalgic tie-in. After The Emoji Movie, though, everyone sent me requests to review another current abomination.
(Cut to a shot of said abomination: The Boss Baby)
NC (vo): Only this one was actually a big hit, led to a spinoff show, and even got nominated for Best Animated Picture!
NC: That means it's not only bad, but considering its audience, it's embarrassingly bad!
(The title for the movie is shown as indie rock music plays, followed by clips)
NC (vo): Boss Baby got a lot of people rolling their eyes at the trailer the same way The Emoji Movie did, but somehow, it made a big splash in a diaper filled with phoned-in urine. Even the idea of a baby acting adult seemed old, (The shots from a Looney Tunes short Baby Buggy Bunny that features Baby Faced Finster, Batman: TAS episode Baby Doll, and the posters for Baby Geniuses and Little Man are shown) with cartoons and a lot of Alan Smithee's later work, but somehow, this grabbed a lot of people despite a lot of negative feedback. Is it the confusing black hole of dumb so many have declared it to be? There's only one way to know for sure. Sadly.
NC: Let's take a look at what generations from now will be embarrassed by with what we're currently embarrassed by. This is Boss Baby.
(The movie starts with an 2D animated globe floating in space and the camera zooming in to Congo in Africa)
NC (vo): The film opens in the Congo...
NC: (surprised) Well, I weirdly owe somebody money.
(The film's main character, a 7-year-old boy named Tim Templeton, is shown hunting in the colorful jungle and is confronted by a gorilla)
NC (vo): ...as it turns out our main character Tim is having a jungle fantasy, as the older version of himself, played by Tobey Maguire, explains.
(The gorilla is actually Tim's father Ted, and the mother Janice comes to them with two hot dogs)
Adult Tim (Tobey Maguire): (narrating) You see, I was seven years old, and back then, you relied on your imagination.
NC (vo; as an adult Tim): If somebody told you I was just your average ordinary guy, not a care in the world, or that I'm Michael Cera in Molly's Game, somebody lied.
(Another of Tim's fantasies is shown, with him picturing his parents working in Puppy Co. as a superhero work of some kind. Then, we're shown multiple copies of his mom and dad putting him to sleep)
Ted (Jimmy Kimmel): It's go time.
NC (vo): Tim has a lot of fantasies about him and his folks...too many fantasies, honestly. What the hell is even going on right now?
Teds and Janice: (singing) You were only waiting for this moment to arise.
NC: Even for a kid's fantasy, this... This is a little weird.
(The parents ask Tim if he wants a baby brother, to which he says no and falls asleep, not knowing that his mother is already pregnant)
NC (vo): The parents say he might be getting a baby brother, which gets him to thinking where babies come from.
(Tim's dream starts with a close-up shot of baby buttocks, after which we see a factory full of newly born infants)
NC (vo): We immediately cut to where this movie came from, as the credits from Storks roll...oh, I mean... No, this is Storks. This is totally Storks.
(It's revealed that if a baby laughs when a robot arm tickles his tummy, he goes to his future family. If not, he is given a business suit and works at "management" section)
NC (vo): It looks like any baby that laughs and getting tickled is given a family, and any baby that doesn't is thrown into management.
NC: Christ! I hope your tummy is sensitive, because it describes the fate of your future!
NC (vo): Is this a commentary on stupid or just a stupid commentary?
(Tim looks into his binoculars and spots a taxi, out of which a baby in a suit that was shown in his dream comes out)
NC (vo): Tim's baby brother...um...steps out of a taxi, suit and all, and surprises him.
(Tim rushes downstairs to see his parents presenting that baby to him)
Janice (Lisa Kudrow): Look who's here. (Tim is visibly horrified by the smirking baby)
Adult Tim: (narrating) I had a million questions.
NC: Yeah, you and every human being watching this, kid!
(A montage of Tim's baby brother crying, throwing stuff around, etc. is shown)
Adult Tim: (narrating) He set up his office, right smack dab in the middle of the house. He conducted meetings. Lots and lots of meetings.
NC (vo): So I guess the idea is this is all told from Tim's point of view. I think. So his quote "meetings" are just him (a baby) crying and the parents coming to his aid, and he's not literally in a suit.
(Tim starts getting suspicious of his brother's behavior)
Tim (Miles Bakshi): He wears a suit!
Janice: I know. Isn't it cute?
NC: Or maybe he is. So, wait.
NC (vo): She (Janice) was clearly pregnant earlier, but he (a baby) arrives in a taxi?
NC: Why do I feel like that's only the beginning of my questions?
(At night, Tim catches his baby brother, revealed as the Boss Baby, on a Chatter Telephone, speaking in a manly, deep voice)
NC (vo): Tim makes a big discovery, though, when he sees that his brother, now voiced by Alec Baldwin, is a pompous, angry, whiny psychopath.
NC: Say it with me. (A caption appears below which NC and the audience say...) And so is his character. (Ba-dum-tss!)
NC (vo): The funny thing is, Baldwin is playing this less as a comedic character and more as a disturbed, even frightening, presence.
NC: (as the caption "As opposed to?" slides up) I've picked that bone enough. (Beat) His Trump is really good.
NC (vo): I can't tell how intentionally scary he's supposed to be, though. Does his menacing delivery add to the comedy when it's coming from a baby, or does that just make everything even more unsettling?
Boss Baby (Alec Baldwin): (holding a surface full of shape holes and frantically trying to put the square shape into a round hole) There's no place for Tim. Tim doesn't fit anymore. What about Tim?! (laughs maniacally)
NC: Just imagine the dialogue from this movie coming from a more menacing role, like The Aviator.
(The clip of Juan Trippe (Baldwin) speaking to Howard Hughes (Leonardo DiCaprio) through a door from The Aviator is shown, but with the Boss Baby's lines heard as if they're coming from Trippe)
Trippe: ("voiced by" Boss Baby) Do the math, kid. There's only so much love to go around. The numbers just don't add up. There's not enough love for the two of us. So keep quiet, stay out of my way, or there's gonna be cutbacks.
NC: Kinda creepy, isn't it?
(Worried, Tim goes back to sleep. Cut to the next morning)
NC (vo): Tim naturally becomes afraid of the suddenly talking baby destined to destroy his life, as he wakes up the next morning to... (A baby-faced sun is shown rising) Oh, and here I thought the most shit-your-pants-worthy baby in the sun was from Teletubbies...
NC: Why has life given me two options on this?!
(Tim is encouraged by his talking Gandalf-esque alarm clock Wizzie)
NC (vo): Tim starts talking to his alarm clock, which, again, leans towards him imagining all this. But why do his fantasies change so much, then? Sometimes, there's a style, sometimes, there isn't, and we can't figure out what's real and what's not. Like...is the damn baby wearing a suit? Can the damn baby talk? It makes it hard to understand the comedy and, more importantly, it creates a damn-ass weird tone that nobody can get!
NC: You know, the kid playing Tim...
NC (vo): ...is the grandson of Ralph Bakshi.
NC: I'm starting to think a bloody riot...
(The battle scene from Bakshi's Fritz the Cat is shown)
NC (vo): ...of pigs and crows is in our not-too-distant future!
NC: Would it really surprise you at this point?
(Tim decides to spy on the Boss Baby, which is again briefly shown in 2D animation)
NC (vo): He enters his fantasy realm, which, again, we're not sure if we're always in or not, to try and get proof that the baby is talking to show his folks.
NC: Hey, screw the folks. Get us proof if he's talking or not! I have no idea what's going on!
(As Tim put on his spy glasses with green vision, three little babies with no pupils in their eyes suddenly appear in front of him, moaning like zombies. Tim gets scared...as well as the NC)
NC: (jaw agape) Now my pants are yellow, and I have no idea what's going on!
(The triplets are revealed to be the Boss Baby's assistants, as well as the girl named Staci and the big baby named Jimbo. They take hold of Tim just as his parents come up and take a picture of it. After that, the Boss Baby has a meeting with other babies, which Tim records on his cassette tape)
NC (vo): It looks like the parents are having a playdate with other kids, and Boss Baby... (The IMDb page of the movie zooms in, showing the cast section) which I'm just now realizing is his actual name...
NC: Parents can be such abstract dicks?
NC (vo): ...uses this as a meeting for other talking babies.
Boss Baby: Babies aren't getting as much love as we used to.
Staci (ViviAnn Lee): Why? Have we been bad?
NC: No, we've been making films like this. I do want to slap a baby after watching!
Boss Baby: (rolls out the movie screen) Behold our mortal enemy: puppies!
(Staci and the triplets aww at the picture of a puppy)
Boss Baby: No, no!
(The Boss Baby shows that CEO of Puppy Co., Francis E. Francis, announced they will release the most adorable puppy ever. The infants' parents come up right in the middle of the meeting, so they start acting baby-like)
NC (vo): So bad enough it's stealing from other movies it'll be at the...strangest parts of them, now they'll have to rip off movies that weren't even arguably movies. (The poster for Cats and Dogs is shown) It looks like Puppy Co., a competitor for Baby Corp., which if everybody knows about, why are the babies pretending not to ta-
NC: (holding hands over his head) Why am I thinking? I should really stop that.
NC (vo): ...is launching a new puppy, which the babies see as a threat.
Boss Baby: And if this new puppy is as cute as we fear, it could put the baby business out of business, baby.
NC: (shifts eyes) So the human race will stop (A prohibition sign with a red line crossing a baby appears on the left) because they'll start making love to puppies? (A photo of a woman holding a puppy appears on the right) I didn't...think that was a question Boss Baby would ask me today, but I'm not seeing any other direction it's pointing me in.
(The infants see that Tim has recorded everything, so the Boss Baby steals the tape recorder, and Tim chases after him, clinging to the toy car he is wildly driving)
NC (vo): But they see Tim recorded their conversation, and they try to get it from him. So...
Boss Baby: Let go, you little-
(Cut to...apparently the parents' point of view, as they look in the window and see Tim wearily clinging on a slowly moving toy car Boss Baby is driving)
Janice: Oh, look, the kids are finally getting along.
Ted: That's nice.
(They clink their cups. We cut back to the chase scene in its previous pace. Cut to NC covering his face with both hands and screaming in annoyance)
NC: If this is all a fantasy, why are we...
NC (vo): ...cutting from Tim's point of view suddenly? We've never done it before.
NC: If Tim is telling his story, is he just saying, "And then suddenly, in reality, this is..."
NC (vo): ..."what was going on! It wasn't a really big action sequence, but the baby was still wearing a suit!"
NC: THE BABY WAS STILL WEARING A GODDAMN SUIT!
NC (vo): This whole film is like a Zen riddle of idiocy. If you solve it, you don't become enlightened, you just become dumber!
(The Boss Baby gets stuck in a round stool and rolls outside. Tim runs back into Boss Baby's room, only to see the baby himself already sitting in an office chair)
NC (vo): Boss Baby is tossed outside, only to end up in his office...this movie cares so little, even they draw attention to that inconsistency...
Tim: Wait, how did you...?
Boss Baby: Hand over the tape, Timmy.
NC: What do we care? We know Oscar voters never watch the movies they nominate. (The poster for Suicide Squad, which won the 2016 Best Makeup award, is shown)
(Tim prepares to launch the Boss Baby out the window in his seat fixed on rubber bands)
NC (vo): And Timmy gets...strangely murderous.
(Their parents come in, and Tim accidentally launches his tape instead. It falls on the road, and the passing car demolishes it)
Tim: My proof!
NC: (as Tim) Oh, I almost launched a baby into a car, but still, my proof!
(Tim's parents ground him, which Tim imagines as a prison term. The Boss Baby enters Tim's room)
NC (vo): Tim is, of course, grounded, which he sees as a prison, but Boss Baby interrupts his fantasy, because...the Boss Baby is in the real world...
NC: ...Where they name their kids Boss Baby...
NC (vo): ...and he has a chat with him.
Boss Baby: I'm on a mission from above.
Tim: (astonished) Are you the Baby Jesus?
Boss Baby: (deadpan) Yes. I'm the Baby Jesus.
(NC is shocked, but stops the caption "WHAT!?!" from appearing)
NC: This movie's dumb...it's not that dumb.
Boss Baby: No! (takes out a pacifier) Take this. I want you to suck it.
Tim: You suck it!
Boss Baby: No, it's for you to suck.
Tim: Eugh! I'm not sucking that!
Boss Baby: Suck it.
NC: Okay, for a kids movie, these are way too many variations of Alec Baldwin using the word "suck"!
Tim: I don't know where it's been!
Boss Baby: It's not where it's been. It's where it will take you.
NC: Well, that just sounds like his wedding proposal.
Boss Baby: Don't you wanna know where babies really come from?
(The Boss Baby and Tim suck on their pacifiers and are transported into Baby Corp., a place where infants with adult-like minds work to preserve infant love everywhere)
NC (vo): So he... (sighs) sucks it, and is taken to where babies apparently really come from.
Tim: So this is where babies come from?
Boss Baby: Where'd you think, the cabbage patch? Magic fairies?
NC (vo): Actually, they kind of address that.
Tim: My parents told me that... (whispers something into the Boss Baby's ear, and he is repulsed by that)
Boss Baby: What? Ugh! No, it's disgusting!
Tim: Yeah, it didn't sound right to me either.
NC: (as Tim) That's why I created this fantasy of denial. That's my most probable movie theory!
NC (vo): So Boss Baby explains that he has to find out what this new puppy is so he can get promoted. But if not, he'll be given a formula that turns him into a normal baby, keeping him there forever.
(Tim and the Boss Baby return to their house)
Tim: I will help you, but just to get rid of you.
Boss Baby: Deal. Here's to never seeing you again. (They shake hands)
NC: Hey, it's whatever your parents said after watching this stinkhole.
(He nods, smiling. We go to a commercial. After returning, we're shown Ted and Janice lifting the grounding from Tim because he acted nice towards the Boss Baby, and they take both of them to "Take Your Child to Work Day" at Puppy Co.)
NC (vo): So Tim agrees to help Boss Baby find out info on this new puppy. It just so happens that's where his parents work, and it also just so happens it's Bring Your Kid to Work Day.
Ted: You wanna get a picture with Puppy Co. Pete?
(That Puppy Co. Pete is a human in a creepy dog costume, who returns a crying child to his mother and chuckles evilly at Tim)
Tim: No, thanks.
(Puppy Co. Pete growls)
NC: It's official whoever directed this should not have children or pets.
(Tim and the Boss Baby try to get past the security guard by sneaking inside an inflatable dog balloon and going out its rear end)
NC (vo): Look! It's how they make their Netflix show spinoff.
NC: (grinning) Nah, nah, nah! They'd be covered in much more shit.
(To make way towards the secret door, Tim puts the Boss Baby in a dog costume. After this, the Boss Baby bumps into a girl, who takes him)
NC (vo): They dress Boss Baby like a puppy and sneak him through the puppy door.
Girl: Oh, what a cute little pup... (The Boss Baby bites her hand and slips out) Ow! (The Boss Baby then throws some money at her) Yay!
NC: Again, I feel like that's just an average encounter for Alec Baldwin.
(The two find a lone stand, on which is a folder with plans for the Forever Puppy)
NC (vo): They find the file on the puppy and switch it out...obviously parody of UHF... (A shot of George Newman preparing to take an Oscar statue (a homage to Raiders of the Lost Ark) from the 1989 movie UHF is briefly shown) ...and the mousetrap is set. Literally. I-It's mousetrap.
(After they take the folder, a Rube Goldberg-stylized machine triggers the chain reaction, ending with Puppy Co. Pete landing into a vat and a cage (with pretty widely spaced bars) falling on Tim and the Boss Baby)
NC: Hey, I can't get that thing past the marble slide. How did all of this go off without a hitch?!
(Tim and the Boss Baby are brought into the office of Puppy Co.'s CEO, Francis E. Francis)
NC (vo): They're confronted by Puppy Co.'s owner, played by Steve Buscemi, named Francis Francis...
NC: Again, there's people named Boss Baby in this world. Nothing matters.
NC (vo): And he reveals he was one of the big guns at Baby Corp. He explains how he was cast out, though, and now his new puppy creation that never ages will put them out of business. All he needs is the secret formula that keeps babies young.
(Francis snatches the Boss Baby's serum bottle for himself)
Francis: You brought me the very thing I needed to destroy Baby Corp.
Boss Baby: No!
Francis: You walked right into my trap!
Boss Baby: You'll never get away with this!
NC: Hey, remember when this movie started with "where do babies come from"?
Francis: Who are you gonna tell, Tim? Your parents? (turns on the screen to show Ted and Janice looking around, worried) I'm taking them both with me to Las Vegas.
Tim: Ha! They'll never leave us alone.
NC: (as Tim) Except for this moment (shifts eyes nervously) of them leaving us alone.
(The parents tell Tim and the Boss Baby they will go with Francis to Las Vegas, and Francis has his brother Eugene pose as the babysitter to keep them from interfering)
NC (vo): The parents are duped into going with Francis Francis, while his henchmen make sure the kids don't escape. They do escape, though, and call for backup.
(Jimbo, Staci and the triplets fight Eugene while Tim and the Boss Baby ride on the bike to the airport. Jimbo jumps on Eugene and hits his face with a rattle. Eugene throws Jimbo so hard and high, he lands on a car hood, yet unharmed)
NC: This movie strangely has more baby abuse than I was expecting. Which I wouldn't mind, except it never ends the film!
(Tim and the Boss Baby arrive too late, as Ted, Janice and Francis fly away to Vegas)
NC (vo): But it's too late, as their parents are taken away. Wait, I thought we were getting close to the end here-
Tim: I would've gotten to my parents if I didn't have to go back for you!
Boss Baby: Baby Corp is going to go out of business.
Tim: You don't even know what it's like to be part of a family.
NC: Ah, dammit! I thought this was the third act climax! It turns out it's just the third act (air quotes) "I don't like you" part.
Boss Baby: I wish I'd never met you!
Tim: I wish you'd never been born!
(The Boss Baby, deeply hurt, walks away from Tim, and the latter keeps sitting in the airport the rest of the day in sorrow)
NC (vo): Yeah, yeah. You got me, movie. I guess they're just gonna hate each other from here on out. No character revelations here, it's just a half hour of sulking.
NC: Oh, wait. That's friggin' me!
(Tim hears a phone call, and it's from the Boss Baby, who apologizes to Tim. Tim looks away to find the Boss Baby is on the other side of the airport)
NC (vo): He calls Tim on the white phone to say sorry, despite literally being across from him...
NC: Because, like any kids, they can't do anything without their phones?
(After reconciling, Tim and the Boss Baby notice an Elvis Presley impersonator and get an idea to fly in another plane headed for a convention for Elvises)
NC (vo): And an Elvis impersonator gives them an idea for how to get to Vegas to save their folks. Though, knowing this film, I wouldn't be shocked if it just was Elvis. Anything's goddamn possible.
(The Boss Baby stands on Tim's head, and they dress up as Elvis and walk to the guard, who also acts like Elvis and speaks gibberish)
Boss Baby: (as Elvis, walking past the guard) There we go! Humina-humina-humina.
NC: Blue Suede Goo is a more convincing Elvis than you.
(They get on the plane and take seats. Tim closes his eyes in fear)
Boss Baby: What's the matter, Templeton?
Tim: Um...my parents always hold my hand during takeoff.
NC: (as Tim, scoffs) Yeah. (The scene of Tim chasing Boss Baby to get a tape is shown below) All this stuff is fine, but taking off on a plane? That I need my hand held for.
NC (vo): Creepy Baldwin baby obliges, and they land in Vegas and make it to the convention center.
(Tim and the Boss Baby run to the presentation of the Forever Puppy, with Francis and their parents on stage)
Francis: We're gonna launch a brand new puppy in every continent. We're going to take over the world, one heart at a time!
NC: (as an audience member, shaking fist) That sounds intimidatingly adorable!
Francis: The Forever Puppy!
(The Forever Puppy rises from its container and barks. The audience cheers wildly and runs close to the puppy. One woman actually leaves her kids alone)
NC: Does anyone notice how weirdly sick this movie is? (That woman and Joan Crawford from the 1981 film Mommie Dearest are shown back-to-back) Mommie Dearest has more compassion than half these parents!
(Discovering Tim and the Boss Baby, Francis locks Tim's parents up in a big heart-shaped box so he can burn them with exhaust from a rocket used to launch the Forever Puppies. Tim and the Boss Baby defeat Francis and Eugene. The Boss Baby opens the rocket to let the puppies out so they can save Tim's parents)
NC (vo): Francis Francis locks the parents up and puts them in a rocket to drop puppies all over the world. Is it sad to see this movie's so strange, this isn't sounding like a crazy plan anymore?
(The Boss Baby returns to his infant state while on the rocket and starts crying)
NC (vo): They release the puppies, but Boss Baby starts turning into a real baby, and Tim has to somehow convince him to jump into his arms.
Tim: (singing) Blackbird singing in the dead of night / All your life...
NC: (smiles) Yeah. Eat your heart out, ending of Coco. (After a beat, he stops smiling) How were these two even in the same catego--?!
(Tim catches the Boss Baby before the rocket takes off and feeds him with the formula. The Boss Baby reverts back to the adult state. Boss Baby is promoted and leaves. Tim goes back to being an only child, but he and Boss Baby miss each other. Tim writes a letter convincing the Boss Baby to live with him as his brother)
NC (vo): Tim gets him down, missing the rocket, and returns to his normal self. Boss Baby gets promoted, but, of course, is unhappy, so Tim offers him a job as his baby brother, which he, of course, agrees to and is... (sighs) ...dropped off via cab again.
Janice: Tim, look who's here!
(Ted and Janice present the Boss Baby to Tim once again, but this time as a regular baby named Theodore Lindsey "Ted" Templeton)
NC: Remember when I compared this to Storks? That was a documentary compared to this film!
(We go to the present day, fading to adult Tim concluding his story he was telling his daughter and his younger brother in a hospital)
NC (vo): Oh, and here's their way around everything. It's a story he's telling his daughter.
Tim's Daughter (Nina Zoe Bakshi): Is that a true story, Daddy?
Adult Tim: Well, sweetie, that's how I remember it.
NC: (as an adult Tim) I hope it in no way questions everything, everyone, everywhere!
NC (vo): Her baby sibling seems to be born, and not since Carrie has both a confusing and haunting twist ended a film.
(Tim's daughter looks at her baby sister...who, much to her horror, is revealed to have a business suit after awakening. The ominous choir plays in the background. The baby sister winks, and the movie ends here)
NC: (grins) God, Christ. I have no idea what I just watched.
(The animated film's clips are shown once more as NC says his closing thoughts)
NC (vo): The big problem with this film is, if it was all a fantasy, there's no real reason to be invested because we have no concept of its reality. The world keeps changing, but not in a stable way we can all latch onto and therefore can't really enjoy. With that said, it is dumb, but it is...surreally dumb. At least it's balls-to-the-wall insane instead of your run-of-the-mill boring bad. It's still got good animation, energy, and even a laugh here or there, but it isn't smart enough to create a concrete world, and it isn't dumb enough just to be mindless humor. It's just awkward. Mostly harmless, I guess, but still awkward. I guess the audience who wanted to see this just wanted to see Alec Baldwin as a cartoon baby do weird cartoon baby things. If you're the kind of weirdo who wanted to see that, and I guess there must be a lot of you, I guess this film is fine. But anyone looking for clever entertainment or, again, a film worthy of an Oscar nomination, is gonna find a massive load worth changing.
NC: I'm the Nostalgia Critic, and... What was that? (gets up and leaves, flabbergasted) What was that?!
(The credits roll)
Channel Awesome tagline - Tim: Are you the Baby Jesus?
Boss Baby: Yes. I'm the Baby Jesus.