The holiday-themed sequel to last year’s hit is one of the year’s worst movies

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The holiday season has barely started and already we have our first lump of coal.

“A Bad Moms Christmas” is not only an insipid, uninspired sequel to last year’s hit comedy, it’s an embarrassment for all parties involved. With no grounding in anything resembling reality, its characters behave like sociopaths while the script wraps them in a blanket of holiday cliches.

The bawdy “Bad Moms” trio — Amy (Mila Kunis), Kiki (Kristen Bell) and Carla (Kathryn Hahn) — is back and it’s Christmas (title-as-plot!), and all three of their mothers arrive on the scene and annoy them in character-specific manners. Amy’s mother (Christine Baranski) is a snooty perfectionist; Kiki’s mom (Cheryl Hines) is a clingy stalker-type; and Carla’s mama (Susan Sarandon) is a dope-smoking grifter just makin’ her way through town, man. So much for holiday cheer.

In the first “Bad Moms,” the three moms were rallying against the pressures of motherhood and acting out accordingly; it worked because there was a bond between the women and an unleashed Kathryn Hahn ripped a hole through the center of the movie.

Here their friendship feels forced and their “bad” behavior overly gratuitous: A trip to the shopping mall results in them getting drunk in the food court (how many malls serve beer?), freak dancing on Santa Claus and stealing a Christmas tree from Lady Foot Locker (um, that’s larceny).

The moms make a generic pact to “take Christmas back” — from what, it’s never quite clear. But it would be nice to rescue this talented cast from a world where any script problem is considered solved by a character cursing and the introduction of another “shocking” slow-motion sequence.

Ho, ho, no.

‘A Bad Moms Christmas’

GRADE: D-

Rated R for crude sexual content and language throughout, and some drug use

Running time: 104 minutes

agraham@detroitnews.com

(313) 222-2284

@grahamorama

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