Written by Michael Reynolds
Las Vegas, Mike Tyson, Chinese gangsters and a masturbating baby. These are just some of the elements that make The Hangover the funniest film of the summer. The story of four men on a bachelor party in Las Vegas may seem like a tired comedy plot, but the hilarious one liners along with the chemistry between the filmâ€™s leads make it a must see summer blockbuster.
Doug (Justin Bartha) is a few days away from his wedding when his two pals, Stu (Ed Helms) and Phil (Bradley Cooper), along with the socially awkward Alan (Zach Galifianakis), decide to take him to Las Vegas for a bachelor party he wonâ€™t forget. The next morning they awake with no memory of the night before and discover Doug is missing. The film follows the antics of Stu, Phil and Alan as they try to find Doug by piecing together the drunken debauchery of the night before, which involved hijacking a police car, an impromptu wedding and a run-in with a former heavyweight champion of the world to name but a few. The funniest moments undoubtedly come from Jonas Brothers-loving Alan who steals the limelight thanks to his juvenile shenanigans. Without the talents of Cooper, Helms and Galifianakis the film would have certainly been worse off, they succeed in making their characters come across as both likeable and entertaining despite some of their more questionable nocturnal conduct.
Much like director Todd Phillipsâ€™ last comedy hit, Old School, the film uses the main characterâ€™s immaturity as a central theme; Phil is the married school teacher who is trying to escape from his â€˜normalâ€™ life and looking to rediscover his youth whereas Alan is the awkward loner who appears to be stuck in a permanent state of adolescence. The film does however have its faults; at certain points it seems as if the humour is perhaps a little too sickening, for example a scene in which an elderly man disrobes is likely to generate more groans of disgust rather than laughs. Phillipsâ€™ also criminally under-utilises the comic genius that is Jeffery Tambor (one of the many stars of Arrested Development) who is relegated to just a few minutes of screen time throughout the film.
Nevertheless Todd Phillips succeeds in delivering a hilariously funny bromance-style comedy with character and, as youâ€™ll undoubtedly leave the cinema wanting to see more of Phil, Stu and Alanâ€™s alcohol fuelled adventures, it is no surprise that a sequel is already underway. As long as you donâ€™t mind some colourful language, occasional nudity and some spur-of-the-moment dentistry, The Hangover is a film that will certainly keep you laughing from start to finish.
Last edited: 7th December 2009
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