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"The Hangover Part II" - {Blu-ray}
John A. Reese
Studio: Warner Brothers
Release Date:
December 6th, 2011
Special Features:

See Below


"The Hangover" was a cultural phenomenon in 2009 and soon it became the highest grossing R-rated movie of all time by grossing $277 million. Plus the budget for that movie was only $35 million, so it was very profitable for the studio. It launched the careers of Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, and Zach Galifianakis. Naturally the studio wanted a sequel and two years later we got "The Hangover Part II". This film was also successful at the box office, but the majority of critics and fans of the first movie were disappointed with the film. So what went wrong? The film starts off with the cliffhanger sequence where the three leads, or the "Wolf Pack", admit that they screwed up big time. Does that sound familiar? Then the story flashes back earlier where we learn that Stu (Ed Helms) is finally getting married to his fiancée Lauren (Jamie Chung) in Bangkok. Phil (Bradley Cooper) and Stu do not want Alan (Zach Galifianakis) to come since he is the one who set started the whole mess in the last movie. However Doug, Alan's brother-in-law, insists that they let Alan come. When they get to Bangkok Alan becomes jealous of Teddy (Mason Lee), who will soon be Stu's brother-in-law, and thinks that he will take Alan's place in "The Wolf Pack". Stu does not want a bachelor party because of what happened last time, but they still go out to the beach for a drink. Surprisingly they black out just like in the last film, and end up in a shoddy Bangkok apartment. When they wake up it is revealed that Stu has a face tattoo, Alan's head is shaved, and Teddy is missing. So the group has to figure out what happened that evening in order to find Teddy. On the way they get involved with monks, a monkey, drug dealers, hookers, and anything else you can think of.

Basically, this film follows the same structure as the first "Hangover" and that is not necessarily a bad thing. I think the film has its fair share of laughs and I still enjoyed myself. Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, and Zach Galifiankis still have good chemistry together and it is entertaining to see the various dilemmas they run into. However, the overall film is lazy because we have an overall sense of what is going to happen. Some of the mystery is gone and you become less interested in the story. Sometimes the script has to present something so outrageous that it masks the fact that it is basically the same as the first film. Some of the humor borders into shock humor, which gets on your nerves after awhile.

Special Features:

The special features are average at best. The main feature is a mock documentary on the making of the film (25 minutes), which is amusing. Some of the additional featurettes include "The Comedy Rhythm of Todd Phillips" (7 minutes), "Not Your Everyday Monkey"(3 minutes), and a "Bangkok Tour with Chow" (3 minutes). There is also a gag reel (5 minutes) and an action mashup (1 minute). The film also comes with a DVD and a digital copy.

However, buyer beware! The digital copy advertised on the disc is not a copy of the movie that you can put import into iTunes or Windows Media Player. It is a new service called Ultraviolent. The idea behind it is that you can stream a copy of the movie through multiple devices without worrying about the film being locked on one device. First, you have to sign up with a service called Flixster and then it links the movie to any device that you want. It sounds good in theory, but there are several drawbacks to it. You need Wi-Fi order to watch it on a portable device. If you have a regular iPod, then you are out of luck because traditional iPod's do not have any type of Wi-Fi capabilities. Plus, unless your portable device has 3G service, then you cannot watch it wherever you go. Even then you have to be careful because if you have a data plan on your iPad, iPhone, or smartphone you will reach your capacity just by watching the movie. In addition, the service is still new and crashes often. Of course, if you do not use digital copies then you can ignore all of what I just said.

Final Words:

"The Hangover Part II" is not a complete letdown as it still has plenty of laughs. I can see why some fans did not like this because it does not do anything remarkably new. The audio and video on the disc look great for a comedy like this, but the Ultraviolent system really ruins it for me. The Blu-ray presentation is well done, but the replay value for this movie is lower than the first one. I call this one a rental.


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