(Note: This review may contain some spoilers. Be warned.)
The bottom line for The Hangover is that it is continually funny. Where with most comedies these days (Like Wedding Crashers) you remember “funny moments” and not that the entire movie was funny. This entire movie was funny. From the moment “Bearded-Wonder” Zack Galifianakis hugged it out with Justin Bartha in nothing but a jock strap and t-shirt all the way to Ed Helms kicking his over-controlling girlfriend to the curb, this movie was funny.
Directed by Old School‘s Todd Phillips, this is another comedic gem. Most of the people in this movie had always been supporting actors. Bradley Cooper most memorably known as Sidney Bristow’s reporter pal from Alias to Ed Helms from The Office. This movie, however, should prove to be the jumping off point for Zack Galifianakis’ career as the box office receipts shows that no one was interested in Land of the Lost and he was the funniest thing in the movie.
The Hangover is simple: four guys head to Vegas for a bachelor party and wake up the next morning with the groom missing, a tiger in the bathroom, and yaddi yaddi yadda–the trailer shows you all that. What it doesn’t show you is the non-stop-smart-as-shit one-liners performed naturally by three actors who are the cream of the crop in straight-faced dry sarcasm.
The answers to the all of the questions raised by the trailer, and in the movie, come in the form of the Chinese Mob, the tiger is Mike Tyson’s and the baby is the son of stripper played flawlessly by the bright Heather Graham. Upon leaving the theater, my girlfriend noted that not only does Graham comes off as exceptionally bright, but she is fantastic at playing characters that are, well, dumber than a doornail.
That just gives you an idea of the misadventures these three guys have in Las Vegas, but the real enjoyment is listening to them deliver great lines from writers Jon Lucas and Scott Moore. For example, Helms was planning on proposing to his jerk of a girlfriend at Bartha’s wedding. The proposal ring was his grandmother’s who survived the Holocaust. in the Drunken Stupor that is the premise of the movie, he marries stripper Heather Graham instead. Read this exchange:
HELMS: “She is wearing my grandmother’s Holocaust ring.”
GALIFIANAKIS: “I didn’t know they gave out rings at the Holocaust.”
In the end, this is the first great comedy of the Summer (Although, I’m personally fired up for Bruno) and for a guy who is about to organize his first bachelor party, gives me something to shoot for.
As an aside for readers in the New York area who want to save some bucks. AMC Theatres here in New York City have six-dollar showings before 11 AM. Aren’t you happy you know that now?