The Wolfpack reunites one last time in The Hangover Part III
The ‘Hangover’ films set a gold standard for side-splitting laughs and over-the-top shock humor using the same formula for the last two films in the series. Does the third and final act of the ‘Hangover’ trilogy fall victim to being more of the same?
You pretty much had to have been living under a rock for the last few years to not have heard about The Hangover movies and the epic drunken adventures and hijinks the “Wolfpack” have been on after wild nights of partying and drinking. With The Hangover Part III being billed as the third and final film in the series it had the difficult task of being fresh and unique enough to set itself apart from the first two films, while still keeping consistent with a level of crazy humor.
With no bachelor parties or weddings of any sort to set up this film, The Hangover Part III veers off the series’ traditional path of the previous Hangover movies when Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms) and Doug (Justin Bartha) hit the open road on a trip put together to help their disturbed and unfiltered friend Alan (Zach Galifianakis) after a family crisis. The Wolfpack, being as disaster-prone as they are, eventually cross paths with a crime boss named Marshall (John Goodman) who forces the pack to track down the untamed Chinese criminal Leslie Chow (Ken Jeong) after he escapes from a Thai prison.
While The Hangover Part III’s principal cast has already been established by the previous two films there are still some nice additions to the film’s cast. John Goodman, while flat and nothing spectacular, still manages to pull off a convincing enough antagonist to get the fires burning beneath the Wolfpack’s paws and get them scrambling on their way into trouble. Mike Epps’ and Heather Graham’s characters also return for this film in small roles, and even the same kid who played as the baby in the first film reprises his role as “Carlos” for one of the funnier exchanges in the film. Melissa McCarthy’s role, although small and a little bit surprising, seemed to fit nicely with the film and her comedy played exceptionally well off of Galifianakis.
The real stand-out workhorse and vital cog of this film is the tandem comedy duo created by Ken Jeong and Zack Galifianakis, who literally carry this film on their backs from beginning to end. They are just that funny. Jeong has a much more expanded role in this film that suits the hare-brained and irreverent plot advancements perfectly. Right from the film’s get-go, The Hangover Part III hits the gas on the crazy comedy and never lets up. It almost felt as if Galifianakis and Jeong were given a blank check to bring the most out of their eccentric characters and they actually delivered.
The most obvious detail worth noting is that The Hangover Part III took the liberty of differentiating itself from the first two films by having the story not revolve around a “blackout” event as a catalyst for the Wolfpack’s crazy adventure. There’s still the element of the team working together to achieve a common goal against a strict deadline but this time around the adventure has a new paint job and sports a different flavor than the other films — but it works.
Ultimately, The Hangover Part III put together a fun ride with just enough laughs and subtle twists to keep you entertained and rolling in your seats until the film’s end. This film probably wouldn’t sit too well with those who don’t enjoy wild and off-the-wall comedies, but to any and all of those who enjoyed either of the previous films, The Hangover Part III is without a doubt a must-see — especially with a crowd. Just be sure to stick around through part of the credits for a great post-credits sequence that you do not want to miss!