REVIEW: The Kitchen wastes fantastic performances on derivative gangster tropes

Though these three actresses playing mob wives-gone-gangster bring the heat to The Kitchen, they just can’t buoy a sagging script.

Though Melissa McCarthy and Tiffany Haddish have made their millions of comedic styles that aren’t for everyone, they join Handmaid’s Tale star Elisabeth Moss in bringing bravura performances here.

When their husbands go away for an armed robbery and assault on arresting officers, three women are assured by the mob — run by matriarch Helen O’Carroll (Margo Martindale in great form) — that they’ll be taken care of financially.

But the envelopes come in light, and the cashflow becomes stagnant. So the women begin offering protection to businesses in town that aren’t feeling the love from their local wise guys. Suddenly, the women have the power in a man’s world, and more responsibility than they could have imagined.

Though I was thoroughly impressed with the co-leads, it’s a script that accounts for stilted dialogue, some truly ridiculous plot twists, and a flimsy third act that ruin what could have been an interesting, unique film in the gangster canon.

It’s dryly funny, interesting and has its moments, but in the end, The Kitchen just can’t cook up a plausible story or do its stunning actresses justice.

2/5 Stars

 

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