The Hangover Part II (2011)
Directed by: Todd Phillips
Running time: 102 minutes
Howdy internet! My apologies for the lateness of this post, but I had a sudden change of heart when I sat down to write this week’s review. Last week I was lucky enough to see Grindhouse at a local cinema here in Melbourne. For those of you who do not know, Grindhouse is a double feature of two films: Planet Terror directed by Robert Rodriguez and Death Proof directed by Quentin Tarantino. I was going to review it this week and I was going to write it last night after I went to see The Hangover Part II and save The Hangover Part II for next week’s review. However, after seeing The Hangover Part II I was suddenly compelled to write about it this week and skip Grindhouse altogether. Let me just say that Grindhouse is amazing, go buy and/or rent it now because it’s brilliant. Why did I skip out on writing about such a great film you ask? Because The Hangover Part II is unbelievably terrible.
In case you had not already guessed, Now Showing this week is The Hangover Part II directed by Todd Phillips. Now, the main reason that The Hangover Part II was a terrible piece of crap was because of its similarities to the first film. I would explain the premise for the first Hangover film thusly:
“The Hangover is about three friends (Phil, Stu and Alan) travelling to Las Vegas with their soon-to-be-wed friend Doug. They have a big night of drinking to celebrate Doug’s last day of being a single man and the next morning they are all so hungover that they cannot remember what they did the night before, and Phil, Stu and Alan have lost Doug somewhere in Vegas. They must then retrace their steps in order to find him and get back to the wedding in time.”
Now, take that premise and replace the words “Las Vegas” with “Bangkok” and the first two “Doug”‘s with “Stu” and the last “Doug” with “Teddy” and you have basically read the premise for The Hangover Part II. They are exactly the freakin’ same! What’s even worse is the fact that the film acknowledges this with the character’s actually uttering the phrase: “uh oh, I think it’s happened again…”. As soon as that phrase was uttered, I knew that this film would be an awful example of any form of entertainment. And the first utterance was in the first three minutes, so it didn’t take long to reveal itself for what it was: shit.
What’s more, I never laughed once during the entire film. Not once. The reason for that is because the jokes are the exact same jokes as the first film! They wake up with a small creature they shouldn’t have and need to take care of, Stu does something he shouldn’t with a prostitute, they pissed off some mobsters, they pissed off the police, Stu does something stupid and permanently body altering, it’s all the same stuff. Only this time they are trying to outdo the last film so all the stuff is unnecessarily crude and ultimately pathetic. For example, the movie just shows you penises whenever it can for no reason but to make you laugh at seeing a penis. In the first film they achieved the random penis gag because of the fact that they found a naked man in the trunk of their car, and that was surprising and made one shocked/intrigued as to how this came to be the night before. But a man just waking up hungover with his dick hanging out does not have the same affect and is just there to make stupid football fan morons go “ha ha, look, it’s a dick!”. You know the kind of people I mean, they drive black cars with gold trim and have “sic cnt” as their number plate. You may also know them as “total wastes of space”.
One of the people I was with said that sequels should never be made since they are never any good, and I disagree with that. A sequel can be good, it’s been done, but when undertaking the challenge you can’t be lazy and just copy/paste the script of the last film with a few name changes. Alien managed to have an excellent sequel to its original because it was a different film and followed on from the story of the first one, but didn’t just copy the exact same series of events. James Cameron brought intense action into the mix of the suspenseful horror of the series, and to great effect.
But I get the feeling that The Hangover was a movie where a sequel was doomed from the start no matter how hard the filmmakers tried. If they made a film where the characters had hangovers after a huge, chaotic night of drinking and needed to retrace their steps so as to make it back to something on time, they would end up with the shitty sequel that they did end up with. But if they made a film about the characters from the first film just being regular guys following the events of the first one, then it’s not really The Hangover Part II is it? It’s just Three Dudes Regretting Their Trip to Vegas which would be a completely new film and it not be a sequel to The Hangover at all. They just should not have bothered and quit while they were ahead. The Hangover was an unexpected masterpiece of comedic timing and storytelling, something they could not possibly do twice and shouldn’t have even tried. Shame on them for tainting the original’s glory.
I’m betting a lot of proper people will describe themselves as getting dumber and dumber while watching this film, but I personally had the opposite affect. I know I come across as a pompous smart ass who believes he’s the cleverest man in the world, but I often have debates with my friends and teachers where they plough me into the ground with their intellect and knowledge so I feel kind of stupid. But watching The Hangover Part II and hearing all those football Neanderthals laughing at such pitiful humour, I realised just how much smarter I am then such a large group of people who are recommending this film to their friends. So at least I got one positive thing out of watching the film, I regained some intellectual confidence. I also gained foresight to not go see the inevitable The Hangover Part III that all that football cretin box office success will cause.
See you next time!