Deja vu in The Hangover II

(L-r) BRADLEY COOPER as Phil, ZACH GALIFIANAKIS as Alan and ED HELMS as Stu in Warner Bros. Pictures' and Legendary Pictures' comedy 'THE HANGOVER PART II,' a Warner Bros. Pictures release.
(L-r) BRADLEY COOPER as Phil, ZACH GALIFIANAKIS as Alan and ED HELMS as Stu in Warner Bros. Pictures' and Legendary Pictures' comedy 'THE HANGOVER PART II,' a Warner Bros. Pictures release.
0
Have your say

Blurry vision, vomit mouth and a banging head. It’s a hangover, and one that’s suspiciously familiar.

We can all commiserate with the dread of the ‘morning after’ a heavy night on the juice, and here the scene is the same – a hotel room with Alan (Zach Galifianakas) rolling around, groaning in his own filth, unable to remember the night before.

Of course, it wouldn’t be The Hangover without his cohorts: Stu (Ed Helms), who is set to marry a non-mail order Thai bride, and Phil (Bradley Cooper).

Yet here is where the doubt creeps in. The first time around, their ineptitude was begrudgingly funny.

But can the same idea really be a bellyfull of laughs twice?

The bonehead trio have been relocated to the one place seedier than Sin City, the scene of their last disaster, and wake up in the even more duplicitous Bangkok.

Switching to a city of even darker disrepute could have spawned a slew of sleazy humour but the gags are just plain lazy. Is a smoking primate amusing? Or have I missed the point?

It’s more likely that director Todd Phillips has missed the point. There’s a reason Groundhog Day didn’t have a sequel, and The Hangover II proves it.

A unique selling point it just that, and replicating it, as Phillips has done, sort of negates the point.

The film sticks so closely to its predecessor’s blueprint that it plays out more like a tribute – a conscious recycling of a caper that was hugely successful a year ago.

A Get Him To The Greek-style spin-off with Alan at the forefront would have been a far funnier way to capitalise on the stars’ comedic chemistry.

Instead, we’ve ended up with a very padded Thai adventure with a trail of mayhem taking in monks, monkeys and ahem, ladyboys.

But if you want cheap and easy laughs, mindless misbehaviour, and a largely inoffensive taxation on the brain, it’s worth the money.

There are more Kanye West music cues, another travel-show montage over the opening credits and a second bride-to-be.

Every person who liked the original will watch this one in the hopes of repeating the experience – that’s exactly what you will get.