Alan: I wish monkeys could Skype. Maybe one day.
I must begin by stating that I was not a big fan of THE HANGOVER, the 2009 comedy sensation that would go on to become one of the biggest R-rated successes in history and put director, Todd Phillips, on the map. My expectations going into the highly anticipated sequel were pretty low, as a result. I feel very confident in saying that this time around, I will not be in the minority with my distaste.
THE HANGOVER PART II opens exactly the same way the first one does and essentially plays out the same from there on in, except with significantly less laughter. This time out, Stu (Ed Helms) is getting married and his happy cohorts, Phil and Alan (Bradley Cooper and Zach Galifianakis) are on board to attend the impending nuptials. An innocent beer on a beach in Thailand turns into a night of cataclysmically irresponsible and morally reprehensible behavior, that finds them all waking up in a Bangkok hotel room with zero recollection of how they got there and even less remorse for the damage they've done. It is then of course time to piece the evening back together again in order to find Stu’s future, teenage brother-in-law, Teddy (Mason Lee), whom the threesome have misplaced.
The original works because we’ve all been there before – well, maybe not quite there but at least some variation of that experience, where we cannot quite remember what went down the night before. Despite not being terribly likable characters, the audience can relate and wants to forgive them their foolishness, thus forgiving themselves. The fact that it has happened to them again only portrays the guys as people with serious drinking problems who have no regard for anyone other than themselves. By the time Stu declares that he can’t believe this is happening again, I would be hard pressed to find someone who didn’t agree while shaking their head in shame. I think it's time to get off the sauce, fellas.