Review: THE HANGOVER PART III

By Mark Saldana

Rating: 1.5 (Out of 4 Stars)

I am one of the very few film critics who actually enjoyed The Hangover Part II. I’m sure I will continue to receive a lot of flack for this opinion, but I found the sequel hilarious, perhaps even more so than the first installment. Yes, they basically take the same premise, but up the shock and awe, but because the envelope is pushed further I laughed heartily. Unfortunately, I wish I could say the same about the third and supposedly final installment of the “Wolfpack” trilogy.  To its credit, at least writer/director Todd Phillips and his co-writer Craig Mizin attempt to do something a little different story-wise; however, there are no shocks whatsoever and very little genuine humor of any variety. I did find myself laughing on occasion during the screening, but these moments were rare and too far in between.

Following the death of Garner patriarch, Sid (Jeffery Tambor), the Garner family and the other members of the Wolfpack hold an intervention to talk the highly troubled man-child Alan (Zach Galifianakis) into seeking some psychiatric help. Just prior to his father’s passing Alan had stopped taking his medication which has resulted in more childlike behavior. With “Pack” members Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms), and Doug (Justin Bartha) willing to drive him to the facility, Alan reluctantly agrees to seek help. When trouble, in the form of Leslie Chow (Ken Jeong), returns to haunt them, the road trip takes an unexpected detour.

I sat in anticipation during the screening, waiting for something shocking, thrilling or even simply interesting to happen and it never did. The result is a mostly dull and flat conclusion to the film series.  It is an utter disappointment, despite the potential. Thankfully, the run time is a frugal 100 minutes, because I don’t think I could have taken any more boredom.  As I previously stated, the film has its fun and funny scenes, but not enough to qualify this film as a successful comedy. The story plays out blandly with no surprises whatsoever.

The cast all deliver fine performances, but don’t offer anything worth celebrating. They all appeared to be fulfilling their contractual obligations for an easy check. Even the appearances of Hangover newcomers John Goodman and Melissa McCarthy play out uneventfully. The more I write about this film, the more annoyed I get with it. In fact, I think I may change my rating.

At the start of this review, I had given The Hangover Part III two stars (out of 4), but as one can already tell, I deducted half a point, because I do not think it deserves more than a 1.5.  There’s no need to spend any level of ticket prices for this film, nor is there any reason to rent it either. In fact, my recommendation is to watch it on Netflix Instant for the ease of fast forwarding through the film to the few funny parts. This will help stave off boredom.

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