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Review of The Hangover Part II

The Hangover Part II one sheet
The Hangover Part II one sheet© Warner Bros.

The Hangover Part II


In a perfect world, sequels would always be as good as the film that proceeded it. Unfortunately, it is rare that they are and this ultimately leads even a casual movie-goer to feel suspicious when part two or three comes along. This is especially the case with comedy sequels. I wanted to believe that The Hangover Part II would be the exception to this rule but sadly, it’s just another in a long line of disappointments.

I’d break down the plot of The Hangover Part II but if you’ve seen the first Hangover, then there’s no need for that since it’s essentially the exact same movie. Seriously. The only things that are different are the location (Thailand instead of Vegas), there’s no baby (it’s a monkey this time), Stu (Ed Helms) doesn't pull one of his teeth (he gets a tattoo on his face) and they don’t lose the groom (they lose the brother of the bride).

Even then, those so-called "differences" are really just similarities, to put it lightly. Other than that, you can predict where the film is going from the start, scene for scene. This is disappointing because it feels like the screenwriters basically said, “Let’s just do more of the same.” As a result, The Hangover Part II just feels like a retread, nothing is new. You may as well just stay home and watch the first one. It’s a lot funnier.

What also makes this film a disappointment is that it’s one of the rare occasions director/screenwriter Todd Phillips has let us down. To date, his films (Road Trip, Old School, and The Hangover) have been reliable comedic gold. But The Hangover Part II is right in line with School For Scoundrels, Starsky and Hutch and Due Date; just a complete misfire. After seeing this movie, I’m relieved that they never got around to making the rumored Old School sequel. To besmirch that film's legacy would be intolerable.

That's not to say that The Hangover Part II is completely devoid of any funny moments. There were moments where I laughed heartily but it wasn't enough to make up for the movie as a whole. So if you can’t tell from the previous four paragraphs, I highly recommend skipping this flick and waiting until DVD. But if you’re saying to yourself, “No, come on, how can that be? I’m going to see it anyway even though Kyle is always right,” then stop by the Cinemagic in Hooksett or Merrimack. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.