20 jun. 2011

My Review: The Hangover Part II (7/10)

¨Well we`re living here in Allentown, and he`s driven our lives into the ground. When we woke up we were wasted and drunk; Phil got shot, we got beaten by a monk. I was happy and my life was good; getting married like a dentist should.¨

The trailers got it right when they said the Wolfpack was back; Phil, Stu, Alan, and Doug got together again in this follow up to the highly successful 2008 comedy The Hangover. They even got Mr. Chow to return for the sequel, but what they failed to mention was that one of the main characters from the previous film was missing: Las Vegas. The second part takes place in sunny Bangkok, a long ways away from home. Instead of waking up at a five star suite hotel room, the guys wake up in a roach infested cheap motel room. The movie follows an almost identical premise and the jokes are pretty much the same, but Bangkok just isn’t Vegas and that was actually missing in this film. Other than that I had no other problems with this movie: it was fun, entertaining, and all the main characters were back at it again. Same players, same scenarios, different location. With these talented actors it is pretty hard to mess up a movie like this so if you enjoyed the previous movie than odds are you will like this one. The Hangover was one of my favorite comedies of the decade, the second one doesn’t quite live up to that category, but it still is entertaining. Of course the originality and freshness from the original was missing, but I didn’t have any problems in seeing these guys reunite once again. Todd Phillips was also back as the director after the disappointing and unsuccessful Due Date (which also starred Zach Galifianakis), but he got right back on track where he had left out in The Hangover. He also collaborated with the screenplay along with Craig Mazin and Scot Armstrong (who replaced Jon Lucas and Scott Moore from the original).

Its been two years since Doug (Justin Bartha) got married and now it`s Stu`s (Ed Helms) turn. He has fallen in love with Lauren (Jamie Chung) and is planning on getting married in Thailand where her family currently lives. Phil (Bradley Cooper) is upset that Stu is getting married abroad because he has to buy tickets for him and his wife, but he gets even more upset when he discovers that Stu isn’t going to have a bachelor party. Stu invited them to IHOP the morning before they had to travel and tells them that there will be no party, so they must enjoy their breakfast and consider that his bachelor party. He wants to avoid everything that happened to them in Vegas. Alan (Zach Galifianakis) finds out Stu is getting married and is depressed because he hasn’t been invited to the wedding. Doug convinces Stu to invite Alan since that trip to Vegas has been the highlight of his life and seems to have mentally never left the place. Stu reluctantly decides to invite him so the Wolfpack get together again and travel to a beautiful resort in Thailand. Lauren`s younger brother, Teddy (Mason Lee), is studying in Stanford and also travels with the crew, although Alan doesn’t like this one bit because he isn’t part of the Wolfpack. A couple of nights before the wedding the guys decide to roast marshmallows by a campfire on the beach. They all have one beer and the next thing we know they wake up in a cheap motel room in Bangkok without remembering what happened the night before. Phil wakes up first and finds a finger in a bucket full of water that seems to belong to Teddy, Alan wakes up with his head shaved, Stu wakes up with a tattoo on his face, and Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong) wakes up alongside them. The movie then follows the same premise the first one did as they try to find clues to piece together what happened to them and where Teddy is.

The movie is missing some of the freshness the original film had, but I still had a fun time. More of the same is not necessarily bad, but it just isn’t as funny either. We kind of expect some of the things that are going to happen. Some of the highlights of the film include new secondary characters like Kingsley, who is played by Paul Giamatti and he is really funny in this film. There is also Samir (Bryan Callen), an Arab dealer searching for Mr. Chow, who has a few funny seconds on screen, but I wish his character would have been given more time. There are also some more funny cameos along the way and surprising moments, although pretty much all the suspense and mystery that the first film had is missing in this one. The Hangover II is still a very raunchy comedy like the first, but the effect the first film had on me was just missing this time. I still can’t complain because I laughed throughout the film. It was fun seeing these characters back in action again and was very pleased with the film. If you liked the first film, you will probably like this one, if you didn’t like the first one then there is no need for you to see the second one because the premise is the same. Just don’t expect another masterpiece.

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