The Hangover Part II Is Like The Hangover Meets The Hangover


THE HANGOVER PART II Aka Zach Galifianakis Says Something Weird: The Movie II!

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It obviously started with a list and a "Duuuuuuuuude!" The list: Thailand, monkey, cocaine, a corpse, Bangkok back alleys, griminess, kidnapping, arson, facial tattoo, strip club, ladyboy, Russian thugs, gunshot wound, more cocaine, international crime syndicate, noodles, Ken Jeong's penis, speedboat, overbearing Asian father, ladyboy, cocaine, ladyboy, cocaine, cocaine, Zach Galifianakis non sequitur, ladyboy, and scene. Then, inevitably: "Duuuuuuuuude, and the monkey should TOTALLY smoke cigarettes! Like a person! DUUUUUUUUUDE. MORE COCAINE!!!"

As expected, the "plot" of The Hangover Part II is just a wire frame on which to hang a series of predictably outrageous set pieces in which predictably terrible things happen to Ed Helms's face. Which is to say, it's a Mad Libs clone of the first Hangover, only with a monkey instead of a tiger (DOWNGRADE!), and an old wheelchair dude instead of a baby, and a be-nubbined merkin instead of Ken Jeong's actual nubbin. The monkey sucks on the nubbin. Galifianakis says, "When a monkey nibbles on a penis, it's funny in any language." That is the movie's best line.

Here's roughly what happens: Stu (Helms) is engaged to that girl from the Real World: Whatever who is an "actress" now. Because she is Asian, she has traditional parents who want her to get married in Asia. She also has a younger brother named Teddy, who is also Asian, which means that he is a genius child-doctor who plays the cello and does not know how to party. Everyone goes to Thailand. Some stuff happens, Zach Galifianakis says something weird ("I noticed that it's a fishing village—is there a Long John Silver's on the island?"), and Helms, Galifianakis, and Bradley Cooper wake up in a shitty Bangkok hotel room with a bunch of cocaine, that monkey, the aforementioned nubbin, and no Teddy.

From there—as per the first Hangover—the film becomes a kind of reverse whodunit, in which the trio attempts to piece together exactly what kind of terrible it they dun the night before, track down the missing Teddy, and get back in time for Stu's wedding. Next stop: waggling ladyboy dongs.

I don't mean to suggest that The Hangover Part II is bad—or even particularly offensive (the film's treatment of transwomen walks a surprisingly delicate line between enlightened and exploitative). It's not. It's fine, really. If you loved The Hangover (like you probably did), you will cry your pants with joy. If you merely tolerated The Hangover (like me), you will like this one slightly better, because it is slightly better. But I just don't think that either film is particularly special or worthy of the infinity-grillion dollars that The Hangover Part II is about to make (by the end of 2011, this movie will be the world's fourth largest economy, just above Germany).

Because as much as I enjoy Zach Galifianakis saying weird stuff (and I have since before you were born), there's just no humanity to hang on to here—and, to me, that's what separates a good comedy from a great comedy. I don't believe that these characters would ever be friends, I don't like spending time with them, and I do not care what happens to them or their weddings or their penises or their adoptive babies or their relationship with Mike Tyson. And sorry, but that's lazy, shitty writing. Adequate entertainment, maybe, but my pants remained dry throughout.

The monkey is cute, though. I'll give them that. It is cute when a monkey does cocaine. recommended


Comments (17) RSS

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JonnoN 1
Quid pro quo, douche bag!

But seriously, if Mike Tyson isn't in this, I'm not going
Posted by JonnoN on May 25, 2011 at 9:39 AM · Report this
camlux 2
The Hangover III: The boys wake up in a canoe floating downstream somewhere in Appalachia. There's a mentally handicapped boy who keeps strumming a banjo, an elderly Burt Reynolds and a pit bull in the canoe with them. Stu has hillbilly teeth and Zach is married to Banjo Boy. Guys with beards, overalls and shotguns are chasing them.
Posted by camlux on May 25, 2011 at 9:56 AM · Report this
freesandbags 3
Hangover IV: Acapulco + Drug cartels = Whose headless corpse is hanging from the overpass?
Posted by freesandbags on May 25, 2011 at 10:38 PM · Report this
Danger 4
The Hangover V: They awake from a cryogenic freeze. One of them is missing an organ. Looking out the window they realize they are in SPAAAAAACEEEE!

What happened? Where are they? Did they party the planet into oblivion? Who cares?

Posted by Danger on May 26, 2011 at 3:12 PM · Report this
I didn't laugh once and kept wondering what everyone was raving about and this one looks even fucking worse!! Yikes!!!
Posted by nicedavid on May 26, 2011 at 3:40 PM · Report this
Knat 6
The Hangover VI: The guys wake up in the 1800's to find they're in a room with a burned out time machine, Lincoln's still-warm corpse holding a smoking pistol, and Ed Helms has switched heads with a grizzly bear.
Posted by Knat on May 27, 2011 at 12:01 AM · Report this
dangerousgift 7
Did the monkey test the cocaine for levamisole first?
Posted by dangerousgift on May 27, 2011 at 3:39 AM · Report this
@3 The set up for Hangover IV: Acapulco....

All the guys are in serious relationships, and are so stressed out... I mean, caring about what someone else feels? Dude! Knowing their penchant for high jinks, they let Zack book them all on a Mexican Cruise. What can go wrong when it's someone else's job to make sure they stay in one place? On a boat? Turns out, he got them a super deal on the gay cruise! After a few scenes of awkardness and men throwing themselves at Bradley Cooper, the boys decide to steal a life boat and escape to the mainland....

Cue the drug lord... and scene.
Posted by They should pay me for this. on May 27, 2011 at 4:42 AM · Report this
JF 9
@7 I don't want you to go unnoticed. That was funny.
Posted by JF on May 27, 2011 at 8:30 AM · Report this
Seriously people, Mike Tyson is a convicted rapist! Why is he still getting work? (I've been screaming this since I was 9 and no one seems to care).
Posted by Rapist cameo on May 27, 2011 at 12:51 PM · Report this
Hangover VII: the dudes wake up in a hospital recovery room to discover that they've all undergone gender reassignment surgery. They're forced to piece together the previous night's insane events from the squawking sentence fragments of their new sidekick, a sassy parrot. Also, Mike Tyson is there. Also, they're late for a Bar Mitzvah.
Posted by Amanda on May 28, 2011 at 12:21 AM · Report this
dlwalter 12
The monkey replaced the baby. The tiger was replaced by Ken Jeong.
Posted by dlwalter on May 28, 2011 at 7:13 PM · Report this
I hated The Hangover so much. Someone told me it was better the second time, which struck me as plausible, so I watched it again. Again, it sucked. It wasn't horribly directed or acted (except for Matthew Cooper who's a black hole of charisma)--but it was as if a self-aware, screenwriting software program wrote it. Like, twenty good comedies were uploaded to its matrix, which analyzed the elements of them, and it churned out a pretty good imitation of what a HUMAN screenwriter might produce. It had no fucking soul; hence no ha-has. Actually, I'm missing somethere here, because It's Always Sunny has no soul and its hysterical. Shit, why did otherwise discerning people like The Hangover? This question drives me crazy.
Posted by Justin V on May 29, 2011 at 12:05 PM · Report this
@13: I think It's Always Sunny works because it sort of reaffirms our collective sense of justice. We're entertained (and a little horrified) by what the characters do, but ultimately we know they're bad people, and nothing ever works out for them because they're bad people, and none of us really want their evil plans to work out for them. It works because they're tragic characters, and it's a decent vehicle for twisted social commentary. We're sort of invested in their failure. If they acted the way they do, and somehow managed to find love and buy houses and make lots of money, we would hate them.

Most comedies, on the other hand, star characters we're supposed to be able to relate to, and those characters generally have good things happen to them and we're supposed to have the type of relationship to them that we like them and want to succeed. Only, it doesn't work if we don't actually form that sort of connection to them, such as in soulless buddy comedies. We find ourselves not caring about them, feeling indifferent and possibly resentful toward their eventual success, and unsatisfied at the end of the movie. Unfortunately, there's something that the millions of people going to the movies this weekend are getting out of The Hangover and The Hangover II. So even if it fails as an objectively good movie, or if the characterization fails, or if it lacks a soul, it succeeds in the one place where it counts ($$).
Posted by random_lez on May 29, 2011 at 10:08 PM · Report this
kittenalarm 15
Lindy's reviews are better and almost always more entertaining than going to the actual movies themselves.
Posted by kittenalarm on May 30, 2011 at 5:48 PM · Report this
The Hangover VIII: The boys wake up in rehab and are forced to piece together their broken lives. Mike Tyson is there. The doctor is a benobo that Zank has to jerk off.
Posted by Spike1382 on June 1, 2011 at 6:43 PM · Report this
The hangover X: In a playful piece of metafiction, all the actors, playing themselves, wake up in hell and have to figure out how they got eternally damned in time for... well, they have forever. They find out it was from pissing on the grave of decent comedy and sending an unrealistic message about binge drinking that encouraged thousands into alcoholism and an early grave.
Posted by bugsy on June 25, 2011 at 2:32 AM · Report this

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