Feel good morning after film to help the summer months go by Discuss this article
Coming on like a more grown-up Dude, Where’s My Car? (an oxymoron in itself), The Hangover starts with four guys toasting the stag night ahead, a final salute to the single life amid the mayhem of Las Vegas. We then cut to the morning after. Our heroes wake to find they’ve acquired a few things from their debauched evening – namely a live tiger and an abandoned baby. There are a few items missing, too. One of them has lost a tooth and, more importantly, they can’t find the groom. Oh, and none of them can remember anything. What happened?
The Hangover makes the most of a weak premise by revealing only a little at a time. The more the remaining three bozos try to find out what happened, the more bizarre clues they come across, which makes a not-particularly-inspiring idea more interesting (really Hollywood, there’s nothing new about benders in Vegas or missing grooms). But all this build up only raises our expectations, and the pay off isn’t good enough. What happened just isn’t that exciting. It’s like the scriptwriters gazed into a well of potential, bottled it, and took their buckets to the neighbouring well of clapped out clichés instead.
The characters, none of whom are likeable, believable or rounded, are a case in point. Good-looking, trendily-coiffeured, pushy guy? That’d be Bradley Cooper, then. Geek with glasses who ends up dating the dumb, inexplicably enamoured stripper? Heather Graham happily makes a fool of herself there. Hairy, spacey odd one out? Zach Galifianakis takes up the mantle. ‘Did Caesar actually live here?’ he asks when they rock up to the Caesar’s Palace hotel. Yes, it’s that funny.
As if that weren’t enough, some of the jokes aren’t just bad, they’re ugly. Resorting to making fun of fat, old men in their underwear and shooting people with tasers is just embarrassing. As is Mike Tyson’s squirmy cameo. But then, who goes to see a film like The Hangover because they’re looking to be challenged? It’s aimed squarely at the lowest common denominator, and makes no bones about it. Could we argue that it’s good in any sense of the word? No. Will you be entertained? If it’s easy, brainless distraction you’re after, most probably. And seeing as, sadly, that’s what most moviegoers seem to be looking for these days, no doubt it’ll be the runaway hit of the summer.By Laura Chubb
Time Out Bahrain,