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Bradley Cooper
as Phil Wenneck

Ed Helms
as Stu Price

Zach Galifianakis
as Alan Garner

Justin Bartha
as Doug Billings

Heather Graham
as Jade

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Netflix, Inc.

Written by Jon Lucas & Scott Moore

Directed by Todd Phillips

Running Time: 1:40

Rated R
for pervasive language, sexual content
including nudity, and some drug material.



The Hangover was easily one of the funniest movies I've seen in years.


Three best friends and one soon-to-be brother-in-law head out on a bachelor party trip to Las Vegas. Things start off normally enough but the next morning the groom-to-be has disappeared and no one else can remember a thing. Waking up in their completely trashed hotel room, Phil, Stu and Alan have to make sense of the little clues they find around them. These include a chicken, a tiger and a baby in a closet. And it only gets crazier from there. They desperately try and retrace their evening and the steps take them to a hospital emergency room, an impound lot, and Mike Tyson's house among other places. Will they be able to find their friend Doug and get him to his wedding in time? Or will they all end up buried in the sand in the desert, laid to rest at the hands of a gay Asian mobster?


The trailers for The Hangover don't do the movie justice. There are scenes in here that will have you rolling in the aisles with laughter. This movie is definitely raunchy, so if you're looking for a standard road trip comedy, you're out of luck. First off, the way the story plays out is brilliant. We start very normally with the four guys getting together. Each of the four guys has their own thing going for them. Phil is the good looking one of the group, who hates his job and is completely against marriage, even though he is married with a kid. Stu is the uptight dentist who is dating a total shrew of a woman but can't see her faults. Doug is the straight-laced one of the quartet, ready for his impending nuptials. And Alan is almost a complete nutcase, but in a calm way. The things he says out of the blue are ridiculous but hysterical. I really think Zach Galifianakis, who plays Alan, will be the breakout star of the film. So these four friends head out to Vegas like millions of others have before them, looking for a last night of fun before the wedding.

However things don't go as planned and the film skips from the beginning of their night to the next morning and we catch up with Phil, Stu and Alan the next morning, completely hungover and having no idea what happened. The rest of the movie is spent trying to piece together the clues and find Doug. And amazingly enough, as ridiculous as some of the things are, they all seem to fit together. There's a tiger in the bathroom. There's a baby in the closet. Phil was in the ER the night before. Each and every item (except the chicken strangely) is explained as we move through the story. And we get taken all over Vegas, sometimes within the confines of a police car they somehow stole the night before. And that police car leads us to a scene with the extremely funny Rob Riggle, a bunch of kids and a taser.

Speaking of Rob Riggle, the rest of the supporting characters in the movie were just as funny as the leads. Heather Graham has an extended cameo as, for lack of a better word, a whore who has a special relationship with one of the characters. I haven't seen her in a long time and let's just say, you see a good amount of her in the movie. Her character wasn't used as well as she could have been, but she brought a lot of energy to the scenes she was in. Mike Tyson appears as himself and I'm not sure which is scarier - his right hook or his singing. Tyson will never be a great actor, but his presence just makes sense in this film. But I think the greatest guest spot however came from Ken Jeong who plays Mr. Chow. His introduction to the movie may be the greatest intro in the history of film. And even with that amazing initial moment, his character gets funnier the more you see him.

The only real downside to the film is that, like with most comedies of this nature, the laughs come every few seconds during the first half and then slow down as the movie progresses. It's understandable and it's also possible it only feels that way because you laugh so much early on that when the movie slows down, it's really hard to pick the pace back up. What I absolutely loved about the movie though is the end credits. Why? During the entire movie as these guys are trying to figure out just what happened, they learn what they did but we never see it. Until the end.


So overall, I loved The Hangover. If you're looking for a great R-rated laugh this summer, this is definitely the movie to see.

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reviewed 06/02/09

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