THE HANGOVER PART II (R16)
There's a clue in the opening song's lyrics to how this flick's going to play out: "It's a bad man's world." But if you've seen The Hangover, you know exactly what you're in for with The Hangover Part II.
Once more, as the movie opens, Bradley Cooper's character Phil is on the phone to his wife and things are not looking good for the groom making it to his wedding on time: "It happened again." Well, it is a sequel, after all, to a flick that made squillions, so don't expect the template to change much. There are small tweaks: this time the groom is dentist Stu (Ed Helms) getting hitched to a Thai-American, so the location has changed too. Instead of Las Vegas we have Bangkok. You just know you're not going to get out of this cinema without hearing someone singing One Night In Bangkok. Once more, Phil, Stu and their gormless not-quite-friend Alan (Zach Galifianakis) wake up from a hedonistic night of revelry that was never supposed to happen. (Stu just wanted a "bachelor brunch".) This time, instead of the groom, they've lost the bride's genius little brother Teddy (Mason Lee). They've gained a severed finger, a monkey, a facial tattoo and the scene-stealing Mr Chow (Ken Jeong) but no clue as to where Teddy is.
Galifianakis said at the premiere: "We do things in this movie that no mom should see her child subjected to. It is so bad in parts that I told my mom she is not allowed to see it." This statement might apply to the photo-montage over the end credits (not as funny as last time), which has some shots designed to shock and titillate. Especially if you're a teenage boy. Despite the stars of this show being men in their 30s, the target audience of this raunchy tribute to drunken/drugged debauchery has to be under- 16s with fake IDs.
Director Todd Phillips, who also helmed the first film (and the obnoxious Due Date), has returned to the money trough and puts us through the same flashback amnesiac rigmarole. It's amusing once or twice. This hangover from Hangover (2 Hungover?) doesn't bring anything new. It's slightly more raunchy and more stupid (yes, the original actually had some clever bits), with added ladyboys. There's a fine line between dumb fun and just plain dumb.