THE HANGOVER PART III
Stars: Zach Galifi anakis, Ken Jeong, Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Justin Bartha
THE mega- popular comedy franchise is permanently hungover. Drunk on the blockbuster success of the fi rst instalment in 2009, the team reconvened for Part II in Thailand a few years later.
There was just one problem. Someone forgot to pack the truly funny stuff.
Now comes a reputed trilogy- closing effort that sees the celebrated Wolfpack back on home turf.
The fi lm assembles a modest collection of guffaw- out- loud moments.
However, once again, the high standard of lowbrow laughs achieved by the fi rst just cannot be matched.
More than ever before, this instalment is powered primarily by the franchise’s two breakout characters, the bearded weirdo Alan ( Zach Galifi anakis) and the mercurial gangster Mr Chow ( Ken Jeong).
As the story begins, Alan is off his meds and on his way to a psych facility, after an
THE RELUCTANT FUNDAMENTALIST intervention conducted by fellow Wolfpackers Phil ( Bradley Cooper) and Stu ( Ed Helms).
However, the group never make it to their intended destination, and soon fi nd themselves in Mexico where big trouble awaits.
Of course, Mr Chow is the cause of much of the turmoil, escaping from a prison in Bangkok and then making off with the gold reserves of a powerful crime lord.
So unless Alan, Stu and Phil locate Chow and retrieve the missing gold, that other guy they always hang around with ( Doug, played by Justin Bartha) will be executed.
The wonky plot should be warning enough that the franchise’s A- game is long gone.
Somewhat predictably, all storytelling roads navigated by are destined to intersect once more in Las Vegas.
Unfortunately, there will be no Mike Tyson, wild tiger on the loose or baby in danger to save proceedings from retreating deep inside the average zone.
For unknown reasons, the fi lm feels the need to occasionally down tools and play the nice- to- see- you- again card to needless effect.
Do we really have to know how Heather Graham’s retired- stripper character is doing these days? Or her kid?
Even the supposedly outrageous and provocative scenes feel all too comfortable ( or is that lazy?) in their desire to offend.
Anyone who expected the series to end with a bang will be disappointed by the wispy whimper coming their way.
Only those happy enough to settle for more of the same will stagger away vaguely satisfi ed.