I probably would have gone an entirely different way for this week's pick were it not for the farce that was "Hot Tub Time Machine". I couldn't believe that folks were having the unmitigated gall to compare that movie to this "The Hangover". That's what caused me to take another look at this one. Was I missing something?? Nope. "The Hangover" truly was a superior movie. It took something as flawed as "Hot Tub" to make me appreciate "The Hangover" even more.
I probably had a more personal attachment to this flick than the normal person. You see...I've been married twice and never got a bachelor plan either time. Therefore, whenever I come across these movies that highlight bachelor party hijinks, I will sometimes find myself living vicariously thru them. Even if they the antics depicted are far-fetched. It doesn't even matter that you could go to Las Vegas a million times and probably NEVER experience what is depicted in such films. It's the principle of the whole thing.
The best thing about "The Hangover" is the angle they decide to take with this bachelor party gone awry. Unlike similar movies where they unfold the events of said bachelor party as we watch, this one skips right to the aftermath. The friends have to do their own sort of reverse engineering in their efforts to figure out everything that happened the night before. It was almost as if we were having the same hangover with them. It also provides for more laughs because the surprises seem more authentic.
Zach Galifianakis as Alan may have very well been the secret weapon in this joint. Bradley Cooper came in with an impressive resume so you would have thought he would been the big gun. He doesn't disappoint by any stretch of the imagination. Even Ed Helms with his experience from "The Office" was no match for the unlikely comedic juggernaut that would come to be known as Fat Jesus.
Every group of friends has that one oddball who just doesn't seem to fit in with the rest. Could be his intelligence isn't quite where the others are, maybe his personality is lacking, maybe his sense of style is a little suspect. Well Zach manages to incorporate all of those elements and then some. He is easily the scene stealer here and in some instances, it's just his appearance alone that is able to produce comedy.
I figured when I saw the trailers that there would be some bits that wouldn't be in the movie. Studios have a habit of doing that for some reason. Fortunately, Tyson's cameo is not one of them. Although his rendition of Phil Collins' "In the Air of Tonight" isn't as funny as the extended trailer, he has other parts that are. It was a little bitter sweet watching his performance knowing the tragedy he recently had to endure with the loss of his daughter. Nevertheless, it was nice to see him able to poke fun at himself and doing it fairly well.
This movie poses a question that I had just brought up with friends the other day. Would a successful businessman really marry a hooker? Or in this case, a stripper? Even if it was from a drunken stupor? I personally couldn't see it happening. But what if once the guy had fully recovered from his drunkenness dude realizes that the stripper actually had a pretty amazing personality? Maybe there really are some strippers out there who are genuinely working their way thru college. I'm just sayin'...
Probably the one disappointment was the inclusion of Mike Epps. I hate to say it, but they probably should have cast someone else in his small part. It seems like ages ago when he was able to keep folks in stitches during his "Friday" heyday. Unfortunately, he just hasn't been funny for a while. I don't know if it's been his material or what, but he has definitely fell off. This movie would have been a good start for him to get back on track. Looks like it just wasn't meant to be.
"The Hangover" was easily the funniest movie to come out last year. It was the first time in a while that I was laughing pretty much all throughout the entire film. Especially at the end when the friends find a digital camera that caught highlights of the evening they can't remember. This is raunchy humor at its best, guaranteed to provide a natural hangover from the non-stop laughter it provides.