Sunday, May 29, 2011

The Hangover Part II

Year of Release: 2011
Director: Todd Phillips
Stars: Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis, Ken Jeong, Justin Bartha, Paul Giamatti, Jeffrey Tambor, Jamie Chung, Mason Lee, Sasha Barrese
Genre: Comedy
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 3

After the disappointing "Due Date", director Todd Phillips returns, and like that effort, this is another film that delivers a lot less laughs than the original. The film follows the same group of friends from the original "The Hangover": Phil, the schoolteacher wanting to lead a wilder life, Stu, the dentist who is getting married after the crazy times in Las Vegas and Alan, the odd and socially awkward one who lives with his parents. Stu is getting married in Thailand, and they all decide to have a night of relaxation before the wedding - the following morning all of them wake up in Bangkok, with no recollection of what occurred the night before and missing Teddy, the younger brother of the future wife of Stu. They all panic and decide to trace what happened the night before.
"The Hangover Part II" is basically a remake of the first film, with a different location. The action has been transferred to Thailand, and there are some inserts of crude humor that are unexpected, but sadly, the humor is largely missing. What the original film had going for it, were the unexpected situations and the premise of this group of people tracking their own steps: these ordinary men turned out to be complete fish out of water in Las Vegas, and from that came the comedy. The sequel tries to capture that sense in Thailand, but it never feels original or in the case of a comedy, funny. All the actors try their best to bring some life to the film, particularly the always funny Ed Helms, but that's not enough. The film needed some originality and some bite, which simply isn't there. Avoidable.