2013 / Director. Todd Phillips.
I was underwhelmed by the first Hangover movie but don't get me wrong... I still loved it. By the time it had come along I was already a fan of director Todd Phillips and as far as I was concerned, it was going to take one hell of a movie to top his previous films Road Trip and Old School. The hype around The Hangover probably affected my reaction to it also and it didn't resonate with me nearly as much as those mentioned movies. BUT it did grow on me eventually and having seen it several times over I do consider it to be essential comedy viewing. My reaction to part 2 was similar to most people's. I was disappointed. It wasn't a bad movie by any means and, in fact, it's probably better than the first... but it played it safe by repeating the original formula. It was essentially The Hangover Redux! - And now for The Hangover Part 3 - yep, this one hit the spot for me. I embraced just about everything about this one. They've resisted a generic recycle of formula and created a new predicament, which builds from consequences of the previous instalments. I won't go so far as to call it "clever" but within the Hangover universe I think that it's definitely credible. The four guys find themselves in a race against time to find Chow, the slimy Asian criminal they met in Vegas. Not that it's a huge spoiler but I wont explain why or how this mission relates to the first movie, only to say that their misadventures have come back to bite them in the ass. The movie's strength is that these characters haven't been tinkered with on paper. Each of them is essentially the same as when we first met them and the writers have refrained from exploiting their traits. The gags are funny, the situations are more subtle and the comedy flows better... I suspect many will disagree with me but I thought this was a great way to wrap up the series and lets cross our fingers that this IS the end. No more. Done. Dusted. Arrivederci!