SUMMER SERIES 2013 - " The Hangover Part 3"
HOW Are They Going to Come Back?
I'm sure I wasn't the only one nervous when word first broke out that there was going to be another Hangover film, and as time went on I'm also sure I wasn't the only one who's stomach continued to drop as each new trailer and promotional poster hit the billboards as well. For example, the picture of Alan and Chow looking menacingly into each others eyes, which bears a striking resemblance to that of Harry Potter and Voldemort in the final installment of that series. Add all that onto an already disastrous overall performance of the second Hangover, and that gives one, and rightfully so, a poor attitude towards any upcoming sequels the studio has the nerve to put out. "The only redeeming quality," I had originally thought, "is that this one is supposed to be the end."
(Just a heads up - the next two sections feature the plotline of the story, and may have some potential spoilers within them, if you're interested in reading only the analysis of the film, scroll down to the section labeled 'My Take'.)
Viva Las Vegas (Potential Spoiler Alert)
Well, the four... Or should I say three? Amigos are back at it again, once again, this time looking to rescue our always faithful damsel in distress Doug again, from the evil clutches of the mob boss Marshall. You see, Marshall has a problem. Chow decided to steal 21 million dollars from him before he got sent off to prison in the second film, and Marshall wants it back. Upon hearing word that Chow recently broke out of a high security prison (in a very Shawshank style), Alan, Stu and Phil are given the task of finding Chow, getting back the money, and bringing it all to Marshall within 3 days, or Doug dies.
And THUS The Plot Thickens! (Spoilers)
This little venture of theirs brings them to Tijuana where Chow ultimately betrays them, and they follow him to Vegas where it all began, bringing them full circle as Phil utters the (ever-so cliche) words... "This ends tonight." From there the story goes on a bit of a tangent, as Alan finds his potential love match, they see the "hooker gone clean" Jade (and her son Carlos) again, and they endure a risky quest of getting into the penthouse of Caesar's Palace, where they're meant to catch Chow. The ending leaves us with a bittersweet memorial of the previous films, as the last shot is inter-cut with shots of previous films, leaving us with a nice, overall pleasant ending... That is, before the post-credits sequence (more on that later).
The film was, without a doubt, a pretty good ending to a somewhat alright franchise. It doesn't even remotely compare to the incredible nature of the first film, but it does itself justice by offering us closure on the characters. With the somewhat innocent Alan, the always nervous Stu, and the cool, calm and collected Phil, the character relationships cannot be much more comedic. I'm glad to see that Alan has his hair back, as looking at a cue ball with a beard for an hour and forty minutes can get rather annoying after a while. In addition to that, and I think I speak for pretty much everyone, I'm very glad they got rid of the whole "hungover, black-out drunk night before so they can't remember anything" deal. That's exactly what gave the first movie it's originality, and ironically enough what detracted from the second one. But the third, I promise is much different. It still lives up to comedic expectations, but also, I noticed, for the first time dares to take the chance to play with our emotions. I don't really remember any of that in the first two, sure we're happy for Stu and Doug getting married, but we really aren't too worried about things such as death, or safety, etc. But this film changes that completely - there happens to be a near death experience on the top of Caesar's palace that (and I kid you not) had everyone in the theater clutching their hands to their mouths and gasping. I also really enjoyed them ending it in Vegas. I really don't feel like there could have been anyplace better to end it, just like in Harry Potter, they're back to where it all began.
Luckily, I don't think there is too much to really hate about this film. I definitely think it tries to take itself too seriously, but with comedies that works! There are multiple scenes with slow motion, epic music, etc. but that just ends up adding to the overall enjoyment of the film. For once, we're able to see character arches, which I think it's pretty safe to say there were none in the other films. To put things bluntly, the first Hangover did an amazing job with originality and comedy, the second one was a complete failure in that sense as it tried to do the same thing the first film did, and the third Hangover was sort of like the first in terms of comedy, but it also had a somewhat decent storyline and structure, and most of all left us with closure (this is, of course not counting the after credits scene which will be discussed in the next section). But overall, I really have no qualms with the film, and I definitely think it's something worth seeing if you have the extra time. It won't be anything that will go down in cinematic history, or break a billion dollars in revenue or any big film like that, but it's a nice way to start the summer movie viewing process. That is if you're like me and are into that type of stuff.
Post-Credits Sequence (MAJOR Spoilers!)
Heads up to all those who haven't yet seen the movie, this section contains spoilers that are necessary to talk about in order to properly understand the analysis of them. If you don't want to read any of that stop now.
Anyway, now the post credit scene, is probably my favorite scene in the entire film, mostly because of it's sheer brilliance - let me explain. Basically, it's a win-win situation for both the audiences that see the films, and the studios that produce them. Now we all know that the studios don't necessarily care about people's reactions to films, all they care about is getting money (and rightfully so). On the opposite end of the spectrum, the audiences really don't want to see another Hangover movie, and the post credit scene helps with that as well.
So basically we're awoken with Phil, dressed in the brides dress as he looks around and sees utter chaos in a hotel room. There's a motorcycle that had been driven into the bar mirror, a machine gun, a large stuffed giraffe with it's head cut off (alluding to earlier scenes), and much more. Stu has, once again, transformed his body in some way as he walks out of the bathroom sporting nothing but women's panties and - I'd venture to guess C cup? - breasts. Stu utters the words "don't freak out, but you need to look down" and of course, Stu freaks out and yells at Alan as he discloses that the wedding cake (for his wedding) was a gift from Chow. Right as he says this, Chow comes out fully naked holding a sword and a bottle of Jack Daniels whiskey and concludes the movie with "we had a great night bitches!".
Now here's how I figure it's a win-win. First off, from the audience's point of view, it adds on to the closure that we got from the ending when they walk out to Alan's wedding as it tells us that, these guys will never change, no matter what. We can be sure they'll continue living their lives as such and so on and so fourth. I'm not sure if you noticed, but there was NO DOUG in the scene, which lends us to believe they lost him again. So in that sense, the closure is nailed in for us as we can be truly convinced that the characters we've come to know will stay the same. Now on the other end, this gives the studios (and for the record I can't believe I'm saying this), an 'out', or a reason to make (brace yourselves) another Hangover film. I don't think they will, but if all goes well with this one and they make more money than they had originally intended, I'm sure that the thought will at least cross their minds. Don't get me wrong, I'm not opting for another film, I just thought it prudent to explain my take on what was going on. Great movie though, and I can honestly say I'm glad I decided to see it.