thoughts on pop culture

Movie Review: The Hangover

The Hangover Alan

The Hangover – Comedy – Starring Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis – Directed by Todd Phillips – R – 100 minutes

What is it like? The Hangover = (Old School + Road Trip) x Superbad

Favorite Scene? It’s very difficult to choose, but I think it would have to be the scene at Jade’s apartment. From Alan’s comparison of their situation to Three Men and a Baby to his comment about the Holocaust Ring, this sequence was brilliant comedy. Honorable mention goes to the photo montage that closes the movie, it certainly made me laugh histarically.

Something new? Definitely. It may be hard to believe, but this isn’t just another “The guys go to Vegas and go crazy” movie. The way the story unfolds is truly unlike any other comedy I’ve seen. I heard an interview with Ed Helms where he described the movie as Bachelor Party meets Memento, and I think that is a pretty fair characterization. While Todd Phillips certainly included some of his trademarks (like a perverted cameo for himself and the inappropriate wedding singer from Old School) he still managed to take this story to a whole new level.

Is it quotable? Holy shit yes. Zach Galifianakis’ lines alone are enough to keep you busy quoting for a long time. As much as he steals the movie as Alan, the rest of the cast has plenty of great lines of their own.

Theater or Rental? See The Hangover in as full a theater as you can. This is one of those laugh-out-loud comedies that is even better when you’re part of a large audience. It is extremely rare for me to see a comedy twice in the theater, but I did and I think I actually laughed more then second time. If you miss it in the theater, don’t bother with the rental, go ahead and put this directly into your shopping cart. Based on what they got into the R-rated version, I can’t wait to see what the unrated video release contains.

June 20, 2009 Posted by | Movies | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Movie Review: The Hangover

House Season 5 Episode 22: House Divided

Last week, when the episode ended with a vision of Amber (aka Cutthroat Bitch) greeting House at his apartment, I was not excited.  It seemed like a weak attempt to fill out the cast after the sudden departure of Kal Penn’s Dr. Kutner.  In addition, I really felt like we had already done the whole ‘vision of Amber’ thing back at the end of Season 4 when House was remembering the circumstances of the accident that caused in her death.

The opening of the episode was excellent.  While I have no experience being deaf, I felt like they did an outstanding job of recreating the experience from the patient’s perspective, especially the way they created the symptoms of Exploding Head Syndrome.

House’s greatest hits of the night:

  • Showing up with the giant 80’s style boombox and the hilarious sunglasses.
  • Calling imaginary Amber “Gazoo” (Flintstones reference for those who didn’t get it)
  • On Wilson helping plan the bachelor party – “What, there were no retired ministers available to plan it?”
  • About Dr. Cameron – “Says the soon-to-be second prettiest Dr. Chase.”
  • Wearing the bluetooth headset so he didn’t look like a crazy man talking to himself.
  • Adding chemical burns to the death certificate after his practice in the morgue went wrong.
  • Secretly throwing the bachelor party at Wilson’s apartment so he had no choice but to attend and end up wandering through the streets with no pants.

This was one of those great episodes of House that gave us both a great patient mystery and an outstanding non-patient story. Watching House go from dismissive of Imaginary Amber to completely reliant upon her was intriguing, but not nearly as interesting as the revelation that his subconscious thoughts were not to be trusted. It’s one thing to take advantage of the excellent recall of distant memory, but another to allow your base instincts to nearly cause the death of Dr. Chase.

Near the end of the episode, we also saw a rare vulnerable side of House, as he admitted to Cuddy that he had not been able to sleep since Kutner’s suicide. It’s rare to see this kind of honesty from House without it being immediately followed by a smart-ass remark. Then, as the episode closed and House awoke after a full night’s sleep, he is greeted by Imaginary Amber, who asks, “Sleep well?”

Far from a desperate attempt to fill the Kutner void, I think this may actually have been the best episode of the season.

May 3, 2009 Posted by | Drama, Science, Television | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on House Season 5 Episode 22: House Divided