Did you see the first one and love it? Then you will like this one for what it is; solid humor and a simple revisit with your favorite characters. If you skipped the original or found it in any way offensive then for heavens sake don’t start now.
For my review of The Hangover Part 2 I was tempted to just copy and paste my review of The Hangover. Then I could simply update the location, point out a few new characters, and be done. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The first Hangover film was one of my favorite movies of 2009 and easily one of the most unique comedies to release in some time. To do a sequel was almost a slap in the face to the original which could have stood alone as a monumental comedy for generations. But if your cow gives golden milk why stop milking, right? Seems to be the Hollywood way of thinking.
In this pre-wedding outing the wolf pack are in Thailand for the nuptials of Stu (Ed Helms) and Lauren (Jamie Chung). They have taken every precaution to avoid a fiasco like their Vegas experience years earlier as this wedding needs to go off without a hitch. But somehow they wake up the next morning in a rundown hotel in Bangkok with no idea how they got there. To make matters worse they have somehow lost Stu’s brother-n-law Teddy (Mason Lee); a 16 year old who is the prize apple of the family. It becomes a race against the clock to find Teddy and get Stu back in time for the I Dos.
This one was smart (though still questionable as to why) in the fact that it doesn’t stray far from the template of the original. All the same great characters are back. Alan (Zach Galifianakis) and Phil (Bradley Cooper) are lost with Stu while Doug (Justin Bartha) is still safely back at the wedding grounds. We saw little of Doug in the first film and they decided to leave him out of this one too for the most part. Not sure if that was continuity or if Bartha was on a tight shooting schedule. This one also gives us a good dose of the wild man Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong), a cigarette smoking monkey, and a view of the seedier side of Bangkok.
The film is as solid in its writing as the first one. The jokes are strong and the delivery by Galifianakis and Helms is spot on. Like in Vegas the boys have to backtrack the nights adventure in search of clues to what they did, how Phil got a tattoo and where Teddy could possibly be. This leads them to strip clubs, tattoo parlors and right smack in the middle of Mr. Chow’s criminal activity. Bangkok is the perfect backdrop for the grit and grime.
The Hangover Part 2 is rated R for pretty much any foul thing you can think of. Language, violence, strong graphic sex and nudity, and drug use. And did I mention the smoking monkey? It is easy to pinpoint the audience for this film. Did you see the first one and love it? Then you will like this one for what it is; solid humor and a simple revisit with your favorite characters. If you skipped the original or found it in any way offensive then for heavens sake don’t start now. I give it 3 out of 5 buzz cuts. I laughed a lot and was fully entertained from start to finish. I doubt I will watch this installment as much as I do the original but I can appreciate them staying close to what we liked and not trying too hard, and thus over shooting the laughs.
Review copyright 2011 Mungleshow Productions. Used by Permission.