That “Unfinished Business” thinks it’s a really fun idea to have a leading character named Mike Pancake tells you all you need to know. So, someone asks Mike in a meeting, your boss’ name is, what, Steve Toast? Ho, ho. Stop, my ribs are cracking.
Vince Vaughn, who thinks the reason “The Internship” failed was because it was PG-13, takes another crack at corporation comedy with this extremely R-rated effort, in which he plays a salesman of metal filings who quits his job rather than take a 5 percent pay cut.
A year later, having taken a 100 percent pay cut while running a failing rival firm that doesn’t even have an office, he finally has a chance to show his now-ex-boss (Sienna Miller) he’s a player by closing his first big deal in Germany. In tow are two guys he met at the old company: a 67-year-old horndog (Tom Wilkinson) and a mentally challenged youngster (Dave Franco) who’s so thick, he doesn’t know the difference between a square and a rectangle.
Mostly “Unfinished Business” is a tale of unfinished jokes: Hey, what if Timothy McWinters (Wilkinson) kept talking dirty, getting high on Ectasy and smoking weed? All of those ideas could lead somewhere. None does. He hires a “sex maid” to come to his hotel room, but then the hooker-cleaner goes to the Vaughn character’s room to clean it instead. He’s happily married and wasn’t expecting that. Ha ha.
Photo: Jessica Miglio
Also there’s a long, long setup for a business meeting that gets conducted in the nude, in a sauna. The payoff? Nothing much, except Franco’s character mutters, “boobs” and “butt crack.”
Director Ken Scott, who guided Vaughn in last year’s flop “Delivery Man,” has the kind of comic timing you’d expect from a corporate compliance officer’s PowerPoint presentation on updates to Section 1.6045-5 (b) (1) regulations. And Vaughn can’t save his doomed project by being “Vince Vaughn,” the motormouthed charmer who is automatically funny if this is still 2005.
There’s one potentially genius scene, the only memorable one in the movie, during which the boys find themselves in the men’s room of a gay dance club, where three friendly patrons chat merrily while all we see of each gentleman is the bit that happens to be sticking out of a hole in the door of his stall. The dimwit Mike Pancake attempts to shake, er, hands with them.
Credit must be given for novelty, as well as for the absence of gay panic shown by Vaughn, but the scene doesn’t live up to its potential. Like every other idea in the movie, it just peters out.
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