Hello and welcome to Ryan’s Movie Reviews!
It’s pretty common to find a movie that makes you laugh. It’s a little tougher to watch one that has some hilarious moments that will always stick with you. But then there’s the incredibly rare gem every now and again of a film that will have you belly-laughing throughout. And 2009’s ‘The Hangover’ is no exception from this comedic, rare gem utopia.
With an all-star cast of Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms and Zach Galifianakis and following the direction of comedic genius Todd Phillips (Borat, War Dogs), The Hangover is a laugh-out-loud comedy that looks at a groom and his three best men having a wild bachelor party in Vegas, only to wake up and discover that they’re hungover and have lost the groom. And it’s one day to go before the wedding. These all combine to make a hysterical movie, that is a must watch.
The direction from Phillips was great, and the way the whole story and film flowed was awesome. I have no idea who, but whoever did the entire storyline and sequencing of events for this film deserves praise. I imagine a group of writers, where one of them said ‘and then they’ll wake up with a-a tiger in the bathroom!’ and someone replied ‘and that’s Mike Tyson’s tiger that they stole!’ and the whole room dying of laughter. I certainly was, especially with all the little plot points and ridiculous little twists. The audience is left trying to piece together the puzzle of where Doug (the groom, played by Justin Bartha) is. I had an amazing time watching this, and still do enjoy rewatching it over again. I believe that the acting from all characters was top notch. Ed Helms took on the role of Stu, a dentist in a bad relationship where he’s about to pop the question to his girlfriend. Helms was perfect for the role of Stu, I can’t think of anyone better to have played this character. Helms was well-suited to the role and played Stu’s freaked out, over-reactive character wonderfully. And his Mike Tyson tiger song was pure gold! The cool guy of Phil was played by Bradley Cooper who was also well suited the role. His character delivered a few laughs, but mainly served as a voice of reasoning and the leader of the Wolf Pack. Though he’s not seen for much of the film, Justin Bartha’s Doug was an interesting character. He’s worth mentioning as he was the groom of it all, and his character is very likeable. I understand that when the premise of the film is lose the groom in Vegas, the character of the groom won’t be seen much, but it would have been brilliant to see more of him somewhere. Heather Graham played Jade, a stripper and escort the Wolfpack meet during their drunk adventures through Sin City. I can’t say too much otherwise we’d be entering spoiler-ville, but Jade is an interesting character who’s good fun. I personally have two favourite characters from the film, Alan and Leslie Chow. Zach Galifianakis plays Alan, the brother of the bride who is somewhat responsible for losing Doug. Galifianakis was one of the best parts of the film. He had me dying of laughter! From what’s illegal on an airplane to persuading Mr Chow to not whack him with a crowbar, Alan is easily one of the funniest parts of the film. I also couldn’t review The Hangover without mentioning Ken Jeong’s highly entertaining character, Mr Leslie Chow. With a combination of humour and madness, he was one of the best parts of the film. We first meet Jeong’s character when he springs out of a car’s boot, naked and thwacking some of our protagonists with a crowbar. Alan tells Chow ‘I hate Godzilla! I hate him too! He destroys cities! Look this isn’t your fault, I’ll get you some pants!’,which is one of my favourite scenes. Another great thing about this film is the relationship between Chow and Alan. Chow is a crafty individual who views Alan as his best friend. Alan is a somewhat abnormal character who seeks friendship. The pair suits each other beautifully, and the friendship between them is so fun to watch.
I quite enjoyed the music in The Hangover. ‘Stu’s Song’ by Ed Helms is both catchy and hilarious, as is Alan’s ‘Three Best Friends’ song. I think the choice of ‘Fever’ for when the guys wake up hungover is perfect for the scene, as was Flo Rida’s ‘Right Round’ for the end of the film when the photos piece together chronologically the night it all went down. There were a couple best musical moments for me. The first is when the band at the wedding played ‘Fame’ after Stu and Melissa’s argument, it was a hilarious mismatch for the scene that was awesome. But even more awesome than that was the other best musical moment for me. This was Mike Tyson air-drumming and rocking out to ‘In The Air Tonight’ with Stu, Alan and Phil before knocking Alan out. It was such an unexpected and hysterical few seconds that the song plays throughout, making it such a memorable moment.
The story was awesome. Hands down fantastic. The best thing about the story is how it was pieced together. Like a jigsaw, you have all the pieces but you can put them together in any way you want. Instead of joining up the story from the rooftop to the moment that they lost Doug, Phillips decides to go time hopping from 5am to 12am, then to 2am and so on. I love this as it shows how crazy the night was but also makes for some hilarious scenes and makes the audience begin to picture how the whole night went down. I also like the tiny twists that provide us with laughs, like waking up and finding a random baby (which Alan names Carlos because why not?!) in a closet, or finding your friend’s missing tooth in your pocket when you wake up. These tiny details that are funny at the time play a key role in joining the dots of the entire story.
From everything in The Hangover, the best parts were small little scenes that made me laugh. Now some of them may make me sound like I’ve got a dark humour, but it’s what personally made me chuckle. The first was when Alan goes to open the door to the cop car but bumps Carlos on the head. I also love the scene where Mike Tyson knocks Alan out. But I love the credits. I praise the team behind that. The credits show pictures in a chronological order of how the night went down with ‘Right Round’ playing in the back. This is one of the best parts of the film for me because it shows just how wild and out of hand the night got and pieces together how one thing lead to another.
The Hangover gets itself an 8.2/10 from me. It avoids the common ‘bachelor party’ clichés and brings something fresh and original to the table. It was full of comedic gold and packed full of hilarious moments and I loved it! I would have liked to have seen more from Doug. I get that the film was losing the groom in Vegas and not being able to find him, but I’m sure there must have been a way to wedge more Doug in!
I must say that The Hangover is the best out of the trilogy, and I personally think it’s Todd Phillips’ best film. Some may argue that ‘Old School’ or ‘Road Trip’ is better, but I’m a sucker for movies that will make me burst out into fits of uncontrollable laughter. For that reason, I think that films like The Hangover and the Borat movie are Phillips’ best. I highly recommend his films and urge you to watch them. For those with Amazon Prime Movies, the entire Hangover trilogy is on there, and it makes for the perfect night in. Grab some ice-cream or popcorn, press play and prepare yourself to laugh like you never have before.
Thanks for reading week three of Ryan’s Movie Reviews! It’s been one crazy week, with my Baby Driver review gaining me a few WordPress followers, quite a few WordPress views and some more Instagram followers. I even had Eiza González (Darling from Baby Driver) like the post on Instagram. Be sure to follow my WordPress to be the first to read my blog posts, and follow me on Instagram, @ryans.movie.reviews, to see my posts there too. Share this page with others and recommend movies I should watch and review.
Next week, I’ll be releasing two reviews. Seeing as it’s Valentine’s Day on Wednesday, next Tuesdays review will be a love story. I’ll also post a review later in the week of a Marvel movie. Hopefully you can guess what it is. See you then!