- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 28, 2016

Melissa McCarthy’s hubby Ben Falcone directed her in a comedy clunker earlier this year within a film starring one of her famed characters developed while a member of The Groundlings improv group.

Home theater viewers now get to meet Michelle Darnell (Miss McCarthy) in The Boss: Unrated (Universal Studios Home Entertainment, Rated R, $34.98, 104 minutes). She’s a woman at the pinnacle of her corporate power and wealth until taking a hard fall for insider trading.

The motivational magnate must now rebound with help from her former personal assistant, single mom Claire Rawlings (Kristen Bell), who happens to have an irresistible brownie recipe great enough to build a tasty empire.

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As they say, let the hijinks begin.

I must hand it to the talented Miss McCarthy, she whole-heartedly dives into any role required of her. Be it a Ghostbuster, super spy or Darnell, it’s a sight to behold as she attempts to pluck a laugh out of any situation.

Unfortunately, her humor mining is not as bountiful here, even with an extra 6 minutes added in the unrated edition of the film.

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I blame a script that forces laughs and plays too deep in sophomoric waters while attempting to tug at the heart strings rather than let her take comedic control.

Help from Kathy Bates as her mentor and Peter Dinklage as her crazed rival does not help.

A full-screen presentation (1.85:1-aspect ratio) does showcase the actress’ enormous talent for painful-looking pratfalls between some stunning views of the Chicago skyline.

Best extras: Besides the theatrical cut, the disc offers an abundant supply of bonus content.

Most important is a 7-minute skit shot in 2005 with her in the comedy sketch group The Groundlings that features Miss McCarthy as Michele Darnell. Of course, it is pretty funny.

Next, a quick 7-minute look at the history of The Groundlings as told by Miss McCarthy while introducing many performers who were part of the group — Mr. Falcon, Damon Jones, Larry Dorf, Annie Mumolo, Michael McDonald and Steve Mallory — now acting in “The Boss.”

Fans will also appreciate over 30 minutes of deleted and extended scenes that includes an alternate ending and obligatory gag reel.

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