Wednesday, May 25, 2011

'Hangover 2' Hitting All The Same Notes

Seems Todd Phillips is re-applying the winning formula from 'The Hangover'. Well, if it ain't broke...

Here are snippets from reviews.

Ian Buckwalter at NPR:

"If it ain't broke, don't fix it." That's the approach director Todd Phillips takes in the follow-up to his hit morning-after comedy The Hangover, moving the story halfway around the world to Thailand but otherwise employing the same formula that earned the first film nearly a half-billion dollars. A surprisingly exact replica of that formula, in fact — making The Hangover: Part II feel less a sequel and more like a remake. The result is a cinematic illustration of the law of diminishing returns, in which more money, more exotic locales, more crazy situations and more Mike Tyson all fuel a familiar carnival of abasement. And as at any carnival, the rides just aren't as much fun on the second go-round.

Eric Hynes at Village Voice:

Most sequels are born of good box office rather than good ideas—if you build it and they come, you simply must build another one—but it’s hard to imagine a more calculating, creatively bankrupt piece of real estate than The Hangover Part II. Trade out Las Vegas for Bangkok, a tiger for a monkey, a lactating hooker for a trannie stripper, a missing tooth for a face tattoo, and you’ve got Todd Phillips’s rote, dispiriting replica of his own surprise smash hit.

Matt Goldberg at Collider:

It’s ironic that The Hangover Part II bases so many of its jokes on shock value and yet clings so dearly to the exact same formula of the original, right down to the plot beats and character actions.

Sean P. Means, Salt Lake Tribune:

I’ve got a great idea for "The Hangover, Part III": Show director Todd Phillips counting the audience’s money and laughing for 100 minutes.

That’s perhaps the only way Phillips and his crew could show more contempt for their audience than they do by making "The Hangover, Part II," which repeats the formula of the 2009 predecessor almost exactly.

Randy Myers:

As inspired as an IRS tax form, the disappointing "The Hangover Part II" exists merely to punch in the same comic numbers as its predecessor.

Moira MacDonald:

"It happened again," says one of the guys from the "Hangover" trio — Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms) and Alan (Zach Galifianakis) — in funereal tones, at the start of "The Hangover Part II." He's not kidding; basically "The Hangover" just happened again: same cast, same plot, same jokes, same guy accidentally having sex with a prostitute, same random appearance of Mike Tyson. Squint, just to make Bangkok blur into Las Vegas, and it's the same movie, just a worn-out, jet-lagged version.

And, my favorite, Manohla Dargis:

If you superimposed a diagram that mapped out all the narrative beats, characters and jokes in “The Hangover Part II” over one for “The Hangover,” the two would align almost perfectly.

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