Friday, May 27, 2011

The Hangover Part II sucked...This is a good thing

So if you haven't seen the hangover, I'm sorry to tell you this. But it sucks. There's a lot wrong with this movie, but in fairness I will go ahead and say that I wasn't the biggest fan of the first movie.

However, the fact is, this movie sucked. But I think that's actually a good thing for all of us. First though, why it sucked. If you haven't seen the movie, DON'T. But if you are still planning on seeing it, then stop reading as things will get a little spoilerish so you've been warned. I will say this though, I do like this trailer in particular.

The Hangover Part II is essentially the same exact movie as the Hangover. Same plot, same jokes, same storytelling devices, same basic premise. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but if you're going to do that, the jokes have to be sharper, the reveals have to be funnier, and the characters have to be deeper.

The Hangover Part II doesn't deliver on any of these fronts. With the exception of a few scenes, the movie is an homage to penis jokes and sub sophomoric humor. When a theater is packed with high school kids, and your penis jokes are only met with mild laughter, you need to hit yourself with a drake voice "what am i doin?"

A comedy is only as good as it's jokes right? Well the jokes here can be seen coming a mile away. Look, if you like penis size stereotypes, this movie is for you. If you're a fan of 2 and 1/2 men, this movie is for you. Spoiler. I knew that was Ken Jeong's penis. So the reveal of him having a small penis wasn't funny. I knew that lady had to have a penis because that's what they were going for this time around. It was too easy.

As the characters go, I'm not really sure why Doug is even in the movie. He makes a couple phone calls and that's it. Since he's gone for a lot of the first movie, it would have been nice to see him get involved in this adventure. It probably would have made for more interesting character interactions. Next, Bradley Cooper's character is almost unlikeable. And I really like the guy too. His unlikeability almost forced me out of the movie to the point where I'm realizing that I'm watching a movie rather than being fully immersed in the film. But Zach's character is the worst. He's annoying, and his lines make me think they were written by someone who vaguely remembers the first movie and decided to create a semi villainous man baby. And Ken Jeong's character makes him do the "Ken Jeong 'it's funny because I'm Asian thing'" and to me that's not funny. It's lazy and uninspired writing.

The problem stems from the fact that all that's getting green lighted in Hollywood now are sequels and reboots. How can we have another Hangover if we're making Hangover 2, Pirates of the Caribbean 8, Men In Black 3, or God forbid another Inception movie? (I loved inception, but Inception 2??? CMON!!) It doesn't make sense. Bridesmaids was a hit, and then immediately I start hearing talk about Bridesmaids 2. I think we should give the writers and directors that make these movies a little bit more freedom to make new original projects rather than jam sequels and reboots down everyone's throats. And it won't be until we stop going to see these movies that we'll stop getting them.

I went to go see the Hangover 2. I'm part of the problem. I realize that. But that's because there are good sequels. The Dark Knight is probably the reigning sequel king at the moment (Soon to be The Dark Knight Rises). I enjoyed Scream 4, the Shrek movies made a shitload of money, and The Spy Who Shagged Me was better than the original. Good sequels are one thing, but a sequel for the sake of capitalizing on one good script is disingenuous. Sequels make economic sense, just not creative sense.

I think if you're going to do a sequel it has to be done within a few parameters.

1.) Write the movies all at once. The fastest Hollywood can turn a sequel around is about 2 years. And that's if you get the script done in 6 months. The Script for the Hangover was in development for years. Of course a script which took 6 months is not going to be as inspired as a movie that a writer spent countless nights tweaking and agonizing over. So if you write the scripts all at once you don't have this problem.

A lot of times people think that the best season of their favorite tv show is the first season and that's typically because the showrunners spend anywhere from 5-10 years outlining these plots and creating characters. The time spent on a script counts.

2.) Wait a really long time to make a sequel. Scream 4. Excellent. Indiana Jones 4. Pretty good. Wall Street 2. Ok I guess that one was terrible, but you have a lot better chance of not sucking if you take the time to write a good script.

Long story short, hopefully word of mouth gets out about how the Hangover 2 sucked and people won't go see it. It's box office will be considerably lower than the first, and because the movie cost more than the first and made less the studios will take notice and green light more original movies.

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