23 May 2013 | generationfilm
The Hangover Pt. III: The End- A Whimpering End to the "Adultolescent" Trilogy that has Very Little Amusement but Loads of Ugliness and Cruelty
More often than not people end up learning the hard way that it's usually better to leave a good thing well enough alone, which might be a lesson truly lived in regards to the quality of what can be deemed as The Hangover trilogy. When the exceptionally lazy Hangover Pt. II was released two years ago it highlighted the immense limitations of director Todd Phillips' storytelling capabilities as it traveled a carbon copy of the first film's intoxicated mystery and amplified vulgarity to different scenery but forgot to bring the laughs along for the trip. Now it seems the Todd Phillips created Hangover trilogy has taken to unintentionally embodying the stages of an actual hangover with the first installment's introduction serving as the party, the dirtier and lazier sequel acting as an unconscious blacked out sleep, and the newest final part becoming a nauseous, unbearable aftermath. The Hangover Pt. III: The End promises the conclusion of what could have been a respectable "adultolescence" comedy franchise and after experiencing the third installments descent into darkness and bitterness let's hope it's a promise that is inevitably kept. Todd Phillips and co-screenwriter Craig Mazin (Identity Thief, Scary Movie 3) have tossed aside all sense of wit, surprise, and genuine humor this time around replacing those qualities evident in the first Hangover with sociopathic cruelty, foreseeable plot changes, and zero sense of amusement diminishing any admirable attempt to change up the plot formula. All the fondness audiences have gained towards the characters of Alan (Zach Galifianakis), Phil (Bradley Cooper), and Stu (Ed Helms) will be tainted in this final chapter as a mixture of performance idleness, poor script follow through, and a lens focusing on their purely sober qualities makes these three characters less than sympathetic, even bordering on incredibly unlikeable. What's ironic is that Todd Phillips has gone out of his way to appease the vilest of criticisms towards his uncreative writing and yet ends up highlighting his true creative limitations by not being able to drift away from a familiar structure. Unfortunately for fans of the series and audience members hoping for a strong summer comedy The Hangover Pt. III: The End ends this less than comedic trilogy with a desperate whimper and through its mean-spiritedness becomes a barely recognizable thread to the humorous and delightfully ill-mannered film that started it all.