The Hangover series has had an undeniably large impact on pop culture. The first entry in the series was a refreshingly raunchy bromance comedy that capably cemented itself in the public’s consciousness. However, the second entry in the series proved to be a largely forgettable affair; I can’t tell you much about it besides the fact that it was set in Thailand (where some sequel hijinks ensued), and not much else. While The Wolfpack’s third outing isn’t downright hysterical, it’s a nonetheless amusing experience.
Interestingly enough, your enjoyment factor of the film rests squarely on your tolerance of Mr. Chow, a character who has quite compellingly, reached near icon-status in the past couple of years. He gets a lot more to do this time out and it’s all quite funny. His adventures have gotten even nuttier (if that was even possible) and his interactions with the Wolf Pack continue to be a highlight.
In terms of our core cast, Zach Galifianakis is still the franchise’s star player. Equal parts goofy and moronic, his Alan provides the film with its most hilarious moments – although I could have done without the opening giraffe gag which was just mean-spirited (and not in a good way). Bradley Cooper (Phil) and Ed Helms (Stu) are as reliable as ever, while Justin Bartha continues to be sidelined for reasons unknown. Thankfully, he’s deprived of the film’s proceedings thanks to a pretty organic plot development which I won’t spoil here.
One of this installment’s surprise highlights is the appearance of John Goodman as the film’s antagonist, Marhsall. Simply put, Goodman is charisma personified, and he delivers a wonderful performance with just the right dose of menace and surprising likeability. I do wish he joined the Wolfpack on their adventure and had a larger role in the film.
It’s worth noting that there isn’t a single hangover in the film. Well… at least until a short post-credits sequence which invariably sets up yet another sequel. Truth be told, I think three is enough guys!
It’s not high-art, but The Hangover 3 accomplishes what it sets out to do: it’s a fun romp that manages to retain the franchise’s inherent charm.