‘The Hangover Part II’ Review

Published 4 years ago by , Updated May 22nd, 2013 at 8:06 am,

hangover 2 review The Hangover Part II Review
Screen Rant’s Vic Holtreman reviews Hangover II

Ah, comedy sequels… after a very successful and funny first film, the question is whether The Hangover Part II is as funny as the original (to which we gave 4 out 5 stars). I’ll just cut to the chase and answer that: No, it’s not, and that’s too bad because I was looking forward to this one.

The original film had an interesting premise and a cast that made up for a funny combination of personalities. We had Bradley Cooper as Phil - roguishly handsome but foul mouthed, self-involved and pretty much a jerk of a fellow; Ed Helms as Stu – not so handsome and more of a “regular guy” who probably hung out with Phil because he’s a “fun guy”; and Alan, played by Zack Galifianakis – the severely socially handicapped, and apparently more than slightly mentally handicapped member of the group.

The plot here is pretty much identical to that of the first film: A bachelor party ends up going terribly awry when our band of buddies is drugged by one of their own. I actually gave credit to the film when right from the start it delivers a shot of Phil on the phone with his wife saying “it happened again.” Great, let’s not dance around the issue – just call it what it is: a duplicate of the first film just set in a different location.

This time instead of Las Vegas, they’re in Thailand – Stu is getting married to a young Thai woman who is ridiculously too gorgeous for him. Her father is not shy about showing his disdain and dislike for Stu, a situation which is resolved in a very poor way at the end of the film. The fiancee (Jamie Chung) has a younger brother named Teddy (Mason Lee) who is a stereotypical Asian prodigy: He’s headed for Stanford at age 16 for a medical degree, and is a virtuoso cello player. Alan takes a dislike to Teddy, since Stu wants him to be a part of their group since he’s, you know, his fiancee’s brother and all.

This dislike is the catalyst for what was supposed to be one beer a couple of nights before the wedding turning into 24 hours of memory loss and mayhem. In the first film it was Alan’s brother who was missing and the source of their frantic quest – this time it’s Teddy. Along the way they run into Russian gangsters, Paul Giamatti (always a pleasure to watch on screen) as another bad guy, transsexual go-go dancers, and Ken Jeong as Mr. Chow, the helium-voiced gangster from the first film.

While in the first film I thought Galifianakis stole the movie, here his character was mostly irritating – while he was clueless and dim-witted in the first film, he had an endearing quality about him. Here, for  some reason, they wrote him as a completely obnoxious jerk, and it detracted from the character quite a bit. Ed Helms’ theatrics seemed like they were meant to make Stu the “steal the movie” character, but it was so over the top it actually felt kind of “self-aware”  - as if he was screaming “look at me, isn’t this EXTREME!?”

While Todd Phillips directed both films, the sequel was not written by the same folks who wrote the first one. The original film was pretty crude in its humor, with some unexpected and extreme bits, and it seems like in this film they felt like they needed to push the boundaries even further. Only it didn’t make the movie any funnier, it just made it more crass. And while in concept, the ending where Stu finally stands up to his fiancee’s father is logical and makes sense, the particulars of how they went about doing this and what Stu’s speech entailed was ridiculous.

Were there some laughs? Sure, but unless you think that penises are really LOL funny you might not laugh very much. Then again, a couple of beers prior to seeing this might make it funnier.

Here’s a trailer for The Hangover Part II:


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Our Rating:

2 out of 5

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  1. I saw it and was completely disapointed at the lack of originality and the darker tone of the film. There were laughs to be had, but nowhere near as many as the previous film!

  2. kinda not surprised on this one. I enjoyed the first one, but it really died after the mike Tyson cameo. I was scratching my head when i heard about the second film coming out. if they couldn’t carry the first movie the whole film i had a hard time believing that they would squeezes a whole second film out of the concept.

    • I disagree with you on the first film I thought it carried very well all the way through and honestly that seems to be the general opinion of the audiences and critics alike.

      That said I was worried about this didn’t see how they could pull of doing the exact same film again and make it fresh and funny again. Seems they may not have. I’ll find out in a few hours when I see it.

      • Daniel,

        I thought you didn’t like the first film? Or am I confusing you with someone else or the first film with a different one?


        • That’s a very hard question to answer Vic. You are mistaken, but one which or if it’s both I do not know lol. I enjoyed the first film I thought it was hilarious and easily in my top 10 comedies. It wasn’t Mel Brooks or (most) Apatow, but it was very close.

      • Daniel, let us know what you think. My buddies and I wanna see it, but I am less enthusiastic about it.

        • Anthony not as good as the first and a lot of what Vic says IMO is spot on. I do think Stu is great and does steal the show though. I thought it was funny but not good just a decent bit of entertainment for a night. One watch and forget about it. If the first one was hilarious to you the second one should be decently funny. I’d a given it more like 3/5. Your average forgettable, but good for a decent laugh comedy.

          If you are looking for a good film or even a good comedy it’s not a good pick. Looking for something to laugh at a few times and pass two hours of your day it’s worth it. I recommend matinee though. Worth the price of admission at the lower price. Just shy of full price though.

        • Anthony another good answer to your question despite being let down by it and it not being a good film. I’d still rather see it again than watch Xmen First Class ever.

  3. I watched the first one last night because my cousin wanted to me to go with him to see the sequel. I found it it to be the most over rated mindless drivel I had ever had the unfortunate pleasure to sit through…. 2hours I will never get back

    sequel highly unecessary

    • dont get me wrong, a few minor chuckles but I dare say I would hacve only given the first 2/5…i doubt I could bare the sequel…. bring on Xmen!!

      • Agreed.

  4. I get your point, but because I was already expecting the same story in a different location I was entirely fine with this movie. I expected the transvestites, I expected the crude humor, there were a bit too many face-palm moments, but I expected those too. All in all, this movie did what I had expected it to do and I enjoyed it. It was good enough for me.

  5. Aw, man, that’s a shame. The first one was hilarious. Oh well, there’s always X-Men: FC and Green Lantern to look forward to.

    • Don’t forget Captain America, I’m looking forward to it the most.

      • Captain America is in The Hangover?! How the “H” did I miss that?

  6. Disappointing, but expected.

    I’ll still watch it on DVD.

  7. well we will have to see I enjoyed the first one, and im kinda surprised at the seriousness in which this movie was reviewed, you would think we where getting a review for a serious drama, I mean this is a frat guy comedy, in the vain of Bachelor party or National Lampoons. Is it laugh out loud funny , are there good jokes, and as far a penis jokes, some of the best comedians and comedies live on Dick and fart jokes, so yeah I guess I might find it funny.

  8. I find the discrepancy between critics and audiences on this movie incredible. Sure, they don’t always agree, but on Rotten Tomatoes it’s 30% critics and 95% audience. That’s not normal. I just feel as if critics just didn’t understand that the point was kind of to have the exact same concept. The beauty of the movie was how they plotted some of the same gags from the first one to further the story. I thought that was wonderfully done.

    Think about it this way, it’s as if you went to see Weekend at Bernie’s 2 and bitched about how there was still two guys propping around a dead guy in sunglasses. That’s kind of the point folks. I found it to be just as funny as the first one and I loved how dark it ended up being.

    • because the majority of people are mindless drones who like things because they are think they are supposed to or they are told its cool. Just look at pop music, same story

      • No.

        The, “they-only-like-it-because-they-think-its-’cool’”, argument is just dumb (I REALLY had to censor myself here). Those “mindless idiots” are listening to pop music and watching movies like this because they enjoy them, and further more, they enjoy them with their friends. Your entire premise is a fancy way of calling them stupid, which is more immature than actually outright calling them stupid.

    • @Prax

      I’m with you 100%. Film critics in general try to separate themselves from the audience reviewers by being overly harsh, overly lenient, pretentious, etc. What they don’t seem to understand is that they’re no different than the audience and their opinion does not and should not count for anything more than some stranger telling you his opinion on a movie.

      I liked Hangover 2. I liked the first one, I love Zack G. and Ed H. I knew what I was getting into and it was a fun day at the movies for me and my friends. Nothing spectacular but certainly some quotable moments, good laughs and an enjoyable film. A solid 3.5/5.

      • I’m glad someone else on here sees it the way I do. I run a review site (small, click my name to check it out (= ) and when I review films or shows or games I try to look at it from the audience’s perspective. There are movies that should be taken more seriously, but most of the time I go to the movies to have fun and be entertained. And I was definitely entertained last night. So what’s the problem? Why do people have to get all Negative Nancy? It really shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that the plot was essentially copied, and to me, that was a redeeming quality, not a knock.

        • I’m tired of pointing out that there are “crowd-pleaser” movies that I’ve given good reviews to, so I won’t bother.

          - I liked the first one.
          - I pointed out I liked that they got past the fact this movie had the same concept as the first early on.
          - I wouldn’t have a problem with it being the same if it was, you know, actually funny.

          It’s not my fault some people are easily amused.


          • Zing!

          • “It’s not my fault some people are easily amused.”

            Kind of insulting to anyone who actually found it funny, Vic..

            I personally haven’t seen it yet (going tomorrow), but a bunch of my friends have seen it and told me it was great. They said it wasn’t as good as the first, but it was funny in it’s own right.

            • “Kind of insulting to anyone who actually found it funny, Vic..”

              As opposed to the comments about movie critics that preceded it?


              • Well, I kind of have to agree with him with that matter. My father and I both have the same taste in movies and both of us never listen to what “critic’s” have to say, mainly for that reason. There have been literally dozens of movies which “critics” HATE and we loved. Vice versa also (critic’s love and we hate).

                The issue is that people take so much stock in what “critic’s” say that they don’t see that movie and see what they think themselves. Look at Roger Ebert, he rated X-Men 2 stars. That’s the same reason why a super hero movie will never win an Academy Award (The Dark Knight). No one takes them seriously.

                That’s my dilemma because I found sites like “Screen Rant” and “Aintitcool News” because I was looking for sites that wouldn’t be overcritical about the movies that are out when it really is not needed. “The Hangover, Part 2″ was excellent and I thought it was hilarious. Several scenes stood out for me. When I see a movie called “The Hangover”, that is exactly what I want to see (what happened in “Part 2″).

                I personally found the fact that it was literally the same movie hilarious. And I felt like that was a joke in itself. Some people just didn’t recognize that.

          • The movie was terrible. Period. I would have given it ONE star. The 1st hangover is one of my favorite movies… the sequel should never have happened.

        • You enjoyed it and someone else didn’t means they “get all Negative Nancy”?
          By that logic it would be just as valid to say you enjoying it and
          someone else not is just you getting all “Positive Pauly”.

    • But if it’s the same movie what was the point of doing it a second time other than to cash in on name recognition? The purpose of a sequel is to continue and move a story along, not repeat the same story.

    • I agree, but it’s really been there for awhile. The thing is that every reviewer has an opinion and, at some level, preconceptions about a movie. Thats what trailers are for. The actual problem is that people tend to take critics too seriously, who usually take movies too seriously. It’s good that people are enjoying this movie despite negative reviewers. Movies are, or should be, entertainment foremost, an art form second.

  9. The only funny part in the first movie was naked asian scene. If they left the scene like that it would’ve remained funny. But they brought him later on in the movie and ruined the random funny-ness of that scene.

    Why there is a sequel is beyond me. Since the trailers all reek of a re-hash and the comedy in the first didn’t warrant a new movie.

  10. just got out of the theater. plain and simple it sucked. the premise just does not work twice.

    • LOL same movie then?

  11. “While in the first film I thought Galifianakis stole the movie, here his character was mostly irritating – while he was clueless and dim-witted in the first film, he had an endearing quality about him. Here, for some reason, they wrote him as a completely obnoxious jerk,”

    So he wasnt acting but playing himself in real life?

  12. Rotten Tomatoes ratings don’t mean anything — that’s just the percentage of people who rated a movie 3.5 or higher out of 5 (and I believe RT just estimates for critics who don’t give numeric ratings).

    In other words, if every critic in the world gave a movie 3 out of 5 stars, it would get a 0% rating. It doesn’t mean anything useful.

    RT is useful because you can go to the movie’s page and actually read summaries of what critics and filmgoers had to say.

  13. Two facts that I have noticed about reviews and opinions about the film so far…
    A lot of reviewers were/are expecting something intelligent or that Todd Phillips should be trying to say something more in the film. Honestly to dissect this movie or any part of it is just plain silly, however I completely understand just plain not liking it as much as the first.

    Second? It’s a damn movie about a bunch of idiots who allow themselves to repeat the same situation. I really feel like most people just want to see these guys act like baffoons all over again…

  14. Ok i JUST saw this and I thought it was funny and creative, the exact thinhs from part 1 happen but differently. Exact same things haha i thought it was good.8/10

  15. As soon as they announced this I knew it was just going to be a repeat and nothing new, and that right there is enough for me to wait for it to come to the local redbox. I’m not going to pay $8+ to see a movie I’ve already seen.

  16. Thank you Rickster!

    • No problem if you have any questions ask away!

      • Have you ever met Bob Hope? (That’s my question in case you were wondering.)

        • No

          • Damn, Ricky, you make me sad! I was expecting you to say “Who is Bob hope?” lol

            • Ive learned my lesson Ants lol

  17. Vic,

    Totally agree with you on this one. Just got back from a showing, and it wasn’t funny at all.

    If you have to watch it, watch it during a matinee. It’s NOT worth a full ticket price.

    -Chet C.

    • Uhm… he pretty much covered what he thought of the movie, so I’d call it a review…

    • prickly pete,

      Perhaps you need to work on your reading skills. Apparently other readers are quite clear on what I thought of the film.

      Yes, I’m cranky.


  18. I liked the first Hangover a lot. In a time that I found that comedy’s where getting stale, the Hangover did something new, that has been copied into many TV shows since then. So when I heard of a sequel I hoped they would present something new, original, and different. I haven’t seen the movie yet, but it saddens that they would go with the same basic plot.

  19. And how’s this – for all you folks leaving “elitist” and “snob” comments and “movie critics can’t just enjoy a movie” – piss off. I’m a HUGE movie fan – I like everything from horror to sci-fi to fantasy to drama to comedy, but if a movie is weak in WHATEVER genre, I’m going to call it.

    If you’re easily entertained by Johnny Depp as Jack Sparrow for the 13th time or swinging transvestite peckers are a laff-riot to you, fine. Go see the movies and laugh your ass off. Me, I ask for something a bit more from my entertainment. I don’t have a problem with R-rated comedies – I loved the first Hangover, I thought Bridesmaids was hysterical. There are TONS of other comedies that I can watch over and over that still make me laugh.

    But just as my opinion is not the be-all, end-all, no one named you freaking king of the world, either.

    Are we clear?



    • I agree.

      People if you cant understand or accept other peoples opinions you don’t belong on the internet! It is a review sheesh, someones OPINION. Get it?

      Now, that thats out of the way…

      Vic I agree with this:

      While in the first film I thought Galifianakis stole the movie, here his character was mostly irritating – while he was clueless and dim-witted in the first film, he had an endearing quality about him. Here, for some reason, they wrote him as a completely obnoxious jerk, and it detracted from the character quite a bit. Ed Helms’ theatrics seemed like they were meant to make Stu the “steal the movie” character, but it was so over the top it actually felt kind of “self-aware” – as if he was screaming “look at me, isn’t this EXTREME!?”

      Thats probably what I hated the most and why part 1 is better. I hoped theyd make his character better but oh well….

      I still find the movie funny. :)

      • Thanks, Rickster.

        I know we don’t always agree, but as Kofi pointed out on Facebook, reviewers aren’t telling people what to think about a movie, they’re telling people what THEY thought about a movie.


        • It is always the reviewers opinion even if a reviewer
          claims to see things from the audience perspective.
          Even there it is the reviewer’s perception of what
          the audience perspective is — his opinion again.

    • That, right there, is why Vic is my new hero. I do reviews myself and too many of my friends bash me for my point of view. I look for all the positives and negatives in a movie and base my review off of that. You and me pretty much agree on the same things about this movie. Except I was still amused with some of ZG’s moments (SPOILER! and yes i was sad when they shot the monkey) but did feel Stu was trying way to hard. Cameo-wise, felt the Mike Tyson cameo was forced, but loved Paul Giamatti. I gave this a 1.5/5 due to its total unoriginality sucking most of the joy out.

    • I hope I never see a comment like this from you again Vic, wanna know why? Because you shouldn’t have to explain yourself, you could be doing other things instead of justifying your thoughts on a film youre reviewing on a website that belongs to you :) Im not saying what you said was wrong, im just embarrassed to see that other people could be so naive. With that being said, it felt good didnt it? Lol Keep up the good reviews and keep up the good work on your wonderful website. Btw, still waiting for the day your reviews will show up on RT. :D

    • Very right. Jack Sparrow became ‘too much of a good thing’ in the 3rd movie for me, and that scene where he drops his brain in the 3rd movie was the final straw for me, hehe.
      Easily entertained people seriously are, hence the bad movies making so much money. Nothing against them, but hey, don’t bash us cos we didn’t like the movie you liked..

      Ignore the naysayers Vic! :D

    • I laugh at the concept of people calling Screenrant reviewers elitist or snobs. The entire point of this site is to be for the every man. At least for it’s reviews. Compared to my movie taste Screenrant is least snobbiest reviews in the world lol.

    • Vic, don’t let them drag you down to their level. You’re the pro here.

      (I used to be a reviewer too.)

  20. I’ve lost all respect for you vic.
    Are we clear.

    • bkmitch,

      Fine. It’s ok for people to lob insults and accusations at movie reviewers, but God forbid we defend ourselves.

      Best regards,


    • Why? Because he defended himself against the silly individuals who take such an affront to him writing a negative review on HIS website about a movie? That is so silly! Screen Rant is the most fan friendly movie website I’ve ever visited, and I’ve seen Vic toil with the constant pressure of justifying his reviews for TIME against the silly immature whining of people who can’t form a well informed opinion for themselves and bash him for doing so FOR them. It’s too bad his review HURTS you so bad, but guess what? He didn’t like it, for reasons he explicitly lays out, if you READ the review. And that’s all there is.

      • Indeed. You either agree or respectfully disagree with the review or opinion not insult the person reviewing the movie. Seriously insulting someone with an opinion is just plain immature. If you dont agree then fine but please do not insult the reviewer.

    • I feel bad for Vic he won’t be able to sleep for days now. See what you’ve done.

  21. same story, same guys, same plot, there is no more fune anymore! sometimes i feel people and as much as i dislike this comment and i´m gonna say, i feel its every bit of it true, girls are going to see “the hottest” star and even with Bradley the movie is not quite good, i gave it 2/5 and even then i feel i´m giving it a bit too much!

  22. Huh, I really wasn’t interested in watching this movie to begin with (hated the original), but I was hoping that reviews would be positive enough to change my mind but they’ve made them worse. And a friend of mine said that it kind of reminded him of any Family Guy episode where instead of going for anything resembling substance they do something shocking and try to pass it off as comedy. He liked it but it doesn’t sound like I’ll agree with.

  23. Thanks for helping me save money on this one Vic .
    Always Appreaciated.

  24. It’s really simple. If a movie is enjoyable, I don’t complain. If it’s not, I bash it up. My friends keep saying I’m too much of a critic, but hey, sorry if I can’t enjoy everything you enjoy. You want me to enjoy Transformers 2 or Iron Man 2′s excessive and extreme comedy, sorry, no can do.
    There’s this movie here in Bollywood in which they show a scene in which the hero of the movie gets into a slap fight with a monkey, with a close focus on both of them slapping each other. People are laughing at that! I mean, come on, that’s your taste? Sorry, bad taste.
    People who are easily entertained will gobble up anything thrown at them. That’s a fact imo. But well, Vic isn’t easily entertained, neither am I. So people, look at the opinions and respect them..

  25. As a film critic I occasionally get the, ‘why can’t you just enjoy the movie?’ comment. It’s exhausting. If you’re super easily pleased at the movies, great. Enjoy. You’ll get your money’s worth 97 percent of the time, and I wish I were you. But if that is you, don’t ever bother reading a review. What’s the point? I accept that some people are able to glean entertainment from virtually any movie. Now you accept that some people expect a degree of competence from a given film.

    • Too right. I saw this review of a really bad Bollywood movie, where a few scenes actually made me cringe. Saw a review where the reviewer said the same thing. To which a guy commented: ‘Me and my wife are IT Professionals in a big firm in Singapore or something. And we totally enjoyed the movie and it didn’t make us cringe.”

      So basically, he wanted to say that being a big IT pro means his taste is good, hahaha.. That is the problem. People easily entertained, and then they think we critics are bad.. (my friends curse me for being a critic, hehe)

    • I agree that too much people make those types of comments about a review and that it must be really exhausting. However, calling people who enjoyed the movie ‘easily entertained’ or ‘easily please’ sounds to me also a little insulting.

      Maybe it would be best to just leave it at ‘different tastes’.
      Anyway, I didn’t see the movie so cannot comment on it.

      Good review Vic, as always. Nice to know what and why you didn’t particularly like it.
      Keep up the good work

      • Yes, I’m sorry if I sounded like I was insulting them. But yeah, different tastes is the problem. People need to understand that.

      • David,

        Yes, you’re right. Then again, look at the context of the conversation and what I was responding to.



        • Oh, don’t get me wrong Vic, I absolutely think you had every right to say it and defend yourself from unfair criticism. Was just pointing it out for fairness sake.

          Besides, I agree with Daniel F earlier post about Screenrant being very ‘not snob’. It’s why I like it so much.

          Take care,