Synopsis: This time, there’s no bachelor party. No wedding. What could possibly go wrong? But when the Wolfpack hits the road, all bets are off.
Release Date: May 24, 2013 MPAA Rating: PG-13
If you think hard enough you can come up with a list of franchises whose third films were disastrous–an easy one is Jurassic Park 3. Well, add to the list The Hangover Part III. Reuniting the cast from the original The Hangover, including cameos by Heather Graham’s Jade and Mike Epps’ Black Doug, The Hangover Part III is no longer bachelor party themed, as in the first two installments. This time around The Wolfpack’s plan is to get Alan into a treatment facility for being crazy, and they are of course derailed because their past Vegas exploits come back to haunt them all thanks to Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong). Doug (Justin Bartha) is taken hostage, because Doug can never actually be a part of the action, and Alan (Zach Galifianakis), Stu (Ed Helms), and Phil (Bradley Cooper) are left with the task of hunting down Mr. Chow to get back gold bars he stole from mobster-villain Marshall (John Goodman). Vegas is the final destination, but a stop in Tijuana is on the agenda first. As for Chow, he has just escaped from a prison outside of Bangkok, Shawshank Redemption style, and is on the run. He’s also crazier and more annoying than he has ever been, and that is not a positive aspect of the film.
The Hangover Part III is very much dependent on Zach Galifianakis’ Alan’s charming buffoondum to carry the entire movie. The problem herein is that the usually hilarious dialogue and physical comedy Alan has is not present. Phil and Stu may as well be poles stuck in place next to Alan for all of the comedic possibilities they are given. Stu’s only memorable moment is when he mutters, “someone needs to burn this place to the ground,” when they enter Las Vegas. Its not exactly funny, but we feel Stu’s pain in returning to the city. Had they made it to Thailand this time around the scar on his face from where the tattoo was removed would surely give him much to say as well. The usually perfectly-matched, timing spot-on, crew that is The Wolfpack have lost their spark. The entire movie feels like a plea to end the misery that is being a part of The Wolfpack. Going back to Vegas, having to put up with Mr. Chow again, and doing all of it not because it was meant to be fun–or to solve the mystery of what happened last night. The story here is a chore, that no one wants to complete.
The Hangover movies have always followed a strict story pattern: the guys go away on a bachelor party trip, plan their evening, and wake up the next morning without any recollection of what happened and a certain “problem” that needs fixing. This leads them on a hunt to solve the mystery, and we, as viewers, get to laugh along the way as their antics get them into even more trouble. The Hangover Part III deters from this formula that worked so well in the first film and just okay in the second. Had the laughs been stronger, the stakes more personal than a simple kidnapping, and overall, had the movie been more interesting it could have been saved. But that’s what it should have been, without any hope involved. The mark was missed on what is supposed to be the conclusion to The Hangover series. But, just when you think it’s over, and the credits roll, uh-oh…the morning after arrives, and Stu’s got two BIG problems.
Think back to the first Hangover movie…Remember how much fun it was? How hard you laughed, even on repeat viewings? Recall the tiger in the bathroom, the cameo by Mike Tyson, the baby? Even the memories can make you laugh. If you’re hoping The Hangover Part III will do the same for you, think again. Screenwriters Todd Phillips (also the director) and Craig Mazin forgot when they wrote The Hangover Part III that they were writing a comedy. Unless jokes about losing your phone and having to reinstall 60 Apps has suddenly become hilarious. If that is true then may god help us all.
There are a couple scenes that produce a giggle, but only one actually has any lasting impression. It involves the outstanding talent of Melissa McCarthy, playing a pawn shop owner, whom Alan lusts after upon first meeting. They share a moment, and a lollipop–its actually quite funny. As for the rest of The Hangover Part III, forget about barreling over in laughter. The jokes are not to be had, the script is tired and boring, and The Wolfpack just don’t seem to have their hearts in it this time around.
Cast and Crew
- Director(s): Todd Phillips
- Screenwriter(s): Todd PhillipsCraig Mazin
- Cast: Bradley Cooper (Phil)Ed Helms (Stu)Zach Galifianakis (Alan) Justin Bartha (Doug)Ken Jeong (Mr. Chow)John Goodman (Marshall)Melissa McCarthy (Cassie)Heather Graham (Jade)Mike Epps (Black Doug)
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- Country Of Origin: USA