The Hangover 2
"The Hangover 2" is yet another in a long line of Hollywood Mad Libs comedy sequels, only this time the film drops any pretense of originality. That's right – "The Hangover 2" is a fill-in-the-blanks photocopy of "The Hangover," with all major plot points intact and only the window dressing changed so that the suckers in the theatre seats don't feel too stupid about having shelled out $20 for a ticket, popcorn and a half-gallon of questionable cola that comes in a jug shaped like Zach Galifianakis' head.
Like any copy of a copy of a copy, "The Hangover 2" offers fuzzy details within a comfortingly familiar comedy framework that deviates little, if at all from the original blockbuster. Think of it as the Reader's Digest edition of the first movie, melted down to pablum for audiences who can only laugh if the memories of shit that was funny in the past are triggered by a frenetic sequence of almost identical events shown on the screen before them.
Pavlov's audience will absolutely love the parade of familiarity that assaults viewers of "The Hangover 2." Once again, we have Ken Jeong's penis in a starring role, only this time instead of jumping out of the trunk of a car, he jumps out of an…ice machine. Ok. Also, there's a monkey instead of the baby, and the primate licks Jeong's flaccid member instead of masturbating on a hotel patio. Throw in a mute monk to replace the first film's tiger, and we've got the trifecta of identical shit that just feels tired the second time.
We could keep going, of course. You want a celebrity cameo? Guess what, it's Mike Tyson again, and that's probably the most believable part of the movie, because I am absolutely certain that Tyson's calendar is wide open for weddings and bar mitzvah's the world over. I'm honestly surprised that "The Hangover 2" was written and produced by the members of Greenpeace, because it's one of the best examples of comedy recycling seen since the "American Pie" franchise went direct to video.
The saddest part of all is that "The Hangover 2" is set entirely in Thailand, which is like the epicenter for fucked up shit that happens to tourists like the clueless protagonists in this movie. The script completely glossed over wasted opportunities, such as the black market organ harvesting, child slavery and human trafficking and the dirty expatriate beach hippies that infest the most beautiful spots for skinny dipping and videotaping low budget tranny porn that makes Thailand special. Maybe the director's cut DVD will feature a second disk that just follows Paul Giamatti around Bangkok as he smothers one hooker after another with his deadly beard and belly combo. We can only hope.
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