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The Hangover Part III: Movie Review

"The Hangover Part III", on paper, seems to be really pushing the limits of a cash grab even for a popular franchise as "The Hangover"; especially with the way the second film turned out to be. We did love the sequel but we also have to be honest that it felt eerily similar to the first one. And no, just having a different setting is not an excuse to hype it up as a new film. So what do we think of the third one? Surprisingly, it turned out to be great. We could confidently say that this is better than the second film but far from what the first is known for. Also, with an original plot line, "The Hangover Part III" should have been the sequel released two years ago.

After being arrested in Bangkok, criminal Leslie Chow, aka "Mr. Chow" (Ken Jeong) is brought to a Thai prison. When a local prison riot starts, he uses it as a distraction to escape and arriving back to the U.S. In California, Alan (Zach Galifianakis) accidentally decapitates his pet giraffe by towing it under a bridge. Alan's father is furious with him for not owning up to his mistakes, has a heart attack and dies. After the funeral, Phil (Bradley Cooper), Doug (Justin Bartha), and Stu (Ed Helms) attend an intervention in response to the fact that Alan is off his medication and obviously out of control. Alan agrees to go to a rehab facility in Arizona only if the rest of the Wolfpack takes him there - they have no choice to agree. While en route to rehab, the Wolfpack is hijacked by men wearing pig masks. Soon they are introduced to Marshall (John Goodman) who informs them that Mr. Chow has stolen some of his gold worth $21 million. Marshall takes Doug hostage and demands that the rest of the Wolfpack find Chow and get the stolen gold back after three days or else their friend dies.

Finally, for the third film, we get an extremely different plot. One that veers away from the "hangover" and drugged up elements into more serious territory. A story that could, in theory, have more meat. What turns out though is a mixed bag. We do appreciate the effort (and this is better than the blatant copy-pasting the second film did) but the conversion process may also alienate some of its core audience. Primarily, the humor and stunts are less crazy this time. You still get the occasional car chase or the Mr. Chao and Alan weirdness but don't expect tiger in a hotel room level crazy. The film also feels a little rushed; putting the characters into awkward scenario after another but never really putting more emphasis into the story. Fortunately, the film turns out to be still extremely funny and this is where the film shines the most. We couldn't stop laughing with the familiar one-liners from the cast most notably Zach Galifianakis. Amazingly, the same old humor still has its charm after four years. In the end, "The Hangover Part III" may not reach the heights of its forefather but it is the definitive sequel to the first.

Rating: 4 and a half reels





Why you should watch it:
- at least they changed the plot this time around
- this should have been the sequel to the first film
- different story but the same old humorous tricks still have their charm

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- the film feels rushed at times
- the "hangover" part has gone the way of the dodo


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