Thus we not only have Miller (who single-handedly provides about seventy percent of the film’s energy), but the strange and wonderful Kate McKinnon from Saturday Night Live (she will have her own movies, unless her comedy is simply too esoteric for a mainstream audience or Hollywood’s conception of one); Randall Park (Fresh Off The Boat), Rob Corddry (Children’s Hospital), Olivia Munn (Attack of the Show!), Matt Walsh (Veep), Karan Soni (Blunt Talk), Oliver Cooper (Red Oaks), Fortune Feimster (The Mindy Project) and Vanessa Bayer (also Saturday Night Live)… among many others. It’s sink-or-swim, thrive or perish, with the constraints of the uneven script and the edit these combatants’ fiendishly random gladiatorial weapons. Thus Corddry – a terrific comedian – is hamstrung by an underwritten and unlikeable character, while Bayer and Park get to shine, sharing, as they do, one of the film’s simplest but funniest scenes.
Stupid Hollywood formula ruins the last act, but until then it’s an amiable ride, resting squarely on Miller’s ample shoulders. He’s a unique comic entity, with a fair chunk of Belushi’s wild anti-authoritarianism tempered by an almost Bateman-level sweetness. It’s a winning combo and makes Office Christmas Party bearable and occasionally mood-enhancing.