Review: 'The Hangover III'

The Hangover III
The Wolfpak - Alan, Stu, Doug and Phil - return to Las Vegas in Todd Phillips’ ’The Hangover III.’

Usually the third is not the charm when it comes to movie sequels, but Todd Phillips' The Hangover III pulls it off. The Wolfpack is back for one last, crazy adventure. It's definitely worth the ride.

The two previous Hangover movies were based around the sordid tales of the morning after an out-of-control bachelor party. Phil (Bradley Cooper), Alan (Zach Galifianakis) and Stu (Ed Helms) woke up to find their lives a disaster area. They spent both movies retracing their steps in order to figure out what the hell happened.

The Hangover III is a different animal, literally, as it starts with Alan cruising down the highway with a giraffe in tow. Meanwhile, in Bangkok, Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong), Alan's friend, escapes jail during a wild prison riot. Alan's friends and family decide he needs an intervention. Next, the Wolfpack, also including Alan's cousin Doug (Justin Bartha), are en route to a clinic in Arizona when a truck runs them off the road. It's Marshall (John Goodman) and his henchmen. Marshall says Chow ripped off half the gold stolen in a heist. He grabs Justin and sends the rest of the guys off on a goose chase for Chow, who's back in the States.

They meet up with Chow, he leads them to the gold, then double crosses them. Where's Chow now? In Las Vegas, of course, the setting of the first movie. He's partying up a storm in the penthouse suite at Caesar's Palace. The Vegas section, with its stupendous stunts, is the best part of the movie. It's also where Alan meets his match - pawn-shop owner Cassie (Melissa McCarthy).

Chow's like The Joker in the Batman movies - Jeung plays him with psychopathic relish. The Wolfpack is pretty much the same as before - Phil's the blue-eyed wiseguy, Stu's the timid joiner and Alan's the juvenile savant. It's really Alan's movie, from the ridiculous giraffe scene to his romance with Cassie.

There may not be another Hangover movie on the horizon, but watch for Galifianakis and McCarthy to team up again: they're a match made in stoner-comedy heaven.

Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.