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Overall Rating

Awesome: 1.85%
Worth A Look: 0%
Pretty Bad38.89%
Total Crap: 20.37%

7 reviews, 12 user ratings

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Hangover Part II, The
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by William Goss

"Recurring Cloudiness of the Shot-Glass Mind"
3 stars

In the interests of not messing with success, 'The Hangover Part II' is pretty much everything youíd expect from a sequel to the highest-grossing R-rated comedy of all time. Our leads donít even deny that theyíre in the same situation all over again, what with their frat-boy 'Rashomon' antics being transplanted from the safe sleaze of Vegas to the dank dens of Bangkok.

Once more, Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms) and Alan (Zack Galifianakis) have been unwittingly drugged after a night of heavy drinking and find themselves parsing the aftermath of much debauchery to relocate a lost member of their wedding party. Doug (Justin Bartha) is back at the resort, safe and sober, so itís not him again; itís Teddy (Mason Lee), the little brother of Stuís bride-to-be (Jamie Chung). She wanted a wedding at home with her family, Stu obliged, and now theyíre tracking Teddy down by way of silent monks, tattoo artists, ladyboy prostitutes and good old Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong).

To be fair, director Todd Phillips and his three credited screenwriters actually do change things up a bit. There is a monkey this time, instead of an unclaimed baby, and the creature proves quite charming Ė both as a monkey and as the lone non-asshole in the group. Seriously, even the reliably off-kilter Alan starts out behaving like an inexplicable tool, turning the first filmís secret weapon into the douchiest character of the bunch, only falling back into his usual naÔvetť once that monkey shows up. A flashback in Alanís mind pictures our three leads as children drinking, smoking and doing stupid shit, and while thereís a welcome psychological insight to that, the sequence mostly seems to have been included because itís supposed to be outrageous to watch children drink, smoke and do stupid shit.

And why doesnít Phil bear more of the torment? Alan wakes up with a shaved head, Stu with a facial tattoo a la Mike Tyson, and Phil appears unharmed. He will be beat up with a bamboo stick and get slightly shot, a light punishment compared to poor Phil. In the first film, Alan got friends out of the whole mess, Stu got something approximating true love, and Phil got more than he bargained for in his family-fleeing efforts. Here, newly minted leading man Bradley Cooper mostly gets to grimace as super-square Stu suffers the strongest consequences for his extra-suburban exploits. (In all fairness, Helms does funnier freak-outs than Cooper anyway, so who better to be this generationís answer to Ned Beatty in Deliverance?)

Cinematographer Lawrence Sher is back, capturing an ideal level of griminess and disorientation. Phillips pulls off a car chase here that fits far better than the one that sidetracked Due Date, a film in which he relished treating his characters cruelly. The routine of it all is otherwise off-set by darker developments Ė missing fingers, coke overdoses, implied sodomy Ė though the most shocking moment comes at the very end, during the requisite closing credits montage. Itís a reference to a famously preserved moment of murder, mockingly re-staged by our crew and bound to go unacknowledged by much of the audience, and yet it's almost admirable simply for being the ballsiest thing in the film.

What more can I say, though? If it ain't broke, neither are they. Like handing Mad Libs to your friends who only work blue, 'The Hangover Part II' delivers the expectedly unexpected with a moderate amount of enthusiasm. As for me: I laughed, I sighed.

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originally posted: 05/26/11 23:56:42
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User Comments

8/15/12 damalc wow, that was unfunny 2 stars
5/20/12 Joe smaltz Turned it off. Couldn't stand any more. 1 stars
1/28/12 Kathryn Martinez Lacks the comedic value of the first film 3 stars
1/21/12 mr.mike Fair sequel moves along but has only 1 "lol" scene. 3 stars
12/06/11 Monday Morning Hey Eric Childress...don't sugar-coat it next time. 3 stars
6/05/11 the truth not even a turd, just diarrhea with a few nuggets of dick jokes 2 stars
6/04/11 Collin This was hilarious i dont know why everyone says its not 5 stars
5/31/11 linlin Not funny and not even interesting. 1 stars
5/30/11 Dan Fell far short of original. Had a weird, dark vibe- not as lighthearted or fun as original 2 stars
5/29/11 Hot Coach Marty Probably the worst movie I've ever seen 1 stars
5/28/11 Shaun A Exactly. It's more of the same, and not presented in a funny or surprising way. 1 stars
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  26-May-2011 (R)
  DVD: 06-Dec-2011


  DVD: 06-Dec-2011

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