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The Hangover Part III(2013)
Capitalizing on the success of two previous Hangovers, Phil and the boys set out on another road trip and soon find their plans reduced to chaos. Before the dust settles, the gang will have to figure out how to rescue Alan from a mental hospital.
For more about The Hangover Part III and the The Hangover Part III Blu-ray release, see the The Hangover Part III Blu-ray Review published by Kenneth Brown on September 29, 2013 where this Blu-ray release scored 3.5 out of 5.
Starring: Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis, Justin Bartha, Ken Jeong, John Goodman
Director: Todd Phillips
» See full cast & crew
The Hangover Part III Blu-ray Review
The Wacky Misadventures of Alan and Chow! Oh... and those other guys too.
Reviewed by Kenneth Brown, September 29, 2013
Before it birthed a trilogy, Todd Phillips' The Hangover was an overnight smash and surprise box office behemoth, earning over $460 million worldwide. It split audiences -- some declared it the comedy of the year, others continue to wonder what all the fuss was about -- but those who embraced the Wolfpack from the get-go at least had good reason to get excited about a sequel. The Hangover Part II, though, was almost universally panned. Even diehard fans found it derivative and unoriginal; a lazy rehash of the real deal that not only telegraphed its punches, but swung much too hard without landing many hits. Not that audiences heeded the warnings. The sequel raked in more than $580 million worldwide and officially promoted the budding series to billion-dollar force of bad-boy nature. A third entry was all but inevitable. A trilogy was imminent. The Wolfpack would ride again. But to where?
Vegas, baby. Back to where it all started. To the city where Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms) and Alan (Zach Galifianakis) first met notorious gangster Leslie Chow (Ken Joeng). Kidnapped by Black Doug (Mike Epps) and crime lord, er, Marshall (John Goodman), the Wolfpack learns that their Vegas trip four years prior led to Chow stealing $21 million in gold bars from Marshall. Now Chow is missing, having escaped the high security Bangkok prison where he was being held, and Marshall needs the Wolfpack to lure the F-bombing madman out of hiding. As collateral, the gangsters take perpetually MIA Doug (Justin Bartha), leaving Phil and company with little choice but to track down their old frenemy. They make short work of the search -- it seems Alan and Leslie have been keeping in touch -- but Chow quickly ferrets out their true intentions and turns the tables. The Wolfpack suddenly finds itself in a desperate scramble to save Doug, outwit Chow and recover a stack of gold for Marshall.
After the implausibly hard-R comedy that was The Hangover and, more so, The Hangover Part II, The Hangover Part III is uncharacteristically tame and unexpectedly uneventful. A lot seems to be happening at any given moment, and yet very, very little actually happens. It doesn't even feel like a Hangover sequel. There's some messy business with a giraffe that was spoiled in the film's trailers, one of the cleanest Melissa McCarthy cameos you're likely to see on the big screen, a run-in with a flock of cockfighting roosters, and plenty of Alan being Alan and Chow being Chow. But nothing startling or boundary busting in the least. Meanwhile, the main storyline involves a simple heist-atop-heist plot that's smaller in scope and scale than most scenes in the first film. For a grandiose, larger than life finale to a grandiose, larger than life series, Phillips and co-writer Craig Mazin deliver an uninspired romp that's infatuated with revisiting events and characters from the first two movies rather than dishing out something fiendishly clever and new. It isn't as awful as The Hangover Part II, but it's almost as bad, if that makes a lick of sense. It isn't derivative either; it couldn't be more different from its predecessors. So different, in fact, that it barely registers as a full-blown sequel. Same characters, same terrible luck, same juvenille charm, albeit without the hyper-real insanity and vicious, go-for-the-jugular comedy that earned the series its billion dollars in the first place. After the drubbing Part II took, Phillips understandably high-tailed it in the opposite direction. It's still the wrong direction, though.
That's not to suggest The Hangover Part III is devoid of laughs. It isn't. I cracked a smile more than once, and even laughed out loud now and again. Chow's prison escape. Alan's funeral performance. Chow's cock smothering. Alan's intervention. Chow's mid-heist revenge. Alan and Cassie. Chow parachuting onto the Vegas Strip. Alan and Chow's threadbare friendship. Alan, Chow. Alan, Chow. Detect a pattern? Cooper is on board to spout "what the f@#k!?" every three minutes, jam his finger on the tough guy button, and not much else. Helms is wasted (his shining moment a gag reflex). Goodman chews scenery but isn't all that memorable. Heather Graham returns without much to show for it. And a cute as a button four-year-old swipes an entire scene out from under three A-level comedians' noses. Galifianakis is hilarious, even when he isn't trying all that hard, but the trio is on autopilot. Worse, the sequel seems to exist solely because Warner wanted to put another sequel on the map and flashed enough cash to rope in the series' leading men; not because there was a third madcap adventure worth telling. (The one-minute scene that appears during the credits makes for a better trilogy capper than anything in the film proper.) I'd have rather Part III followed Chow into his crazy world of sex, drugs, guns and gold and left the Wolfpack high and dry. And at home. Spin-off anyone?
The Hangover Part III Blu-ray, Video Quality
Warner's perfectly sober, show-stealing 1080p/AVC-encoded video presentation does right by the Hangover series, making the most of Part III's high definition joyride. Contrast is a touch hot, as intended, but colors are often stylized but always striking, primaries are armed to the teeth, saturation is dead on, and black levels are satisfying, barring a few muted shadows. Detail is excellent too, with precisely defined edges, little to no ringing, carefully resolved textures, and decidedly decent delineation. Add to that a finely tuned encode free of significant macroblocking, banding, aliasing or errant noise and you have a Hangover presentation primed to please, no matter how you react to the film itself.
The Hangover Part III Blu-ray, Audio Quality
The Hangover Part III also boasts an aggressive, action-packed DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround track that shares far more in common with that of a high-octane summer blockbuster than a chatty R-rated comedy. Dialogue is intelligible, grounded and impeccably prioritized at all times, whether the Wolfpack are whispering to one another mid-heist or screaming at the top of their lungs when the proverbial cocaine hits the fan. LFE output is big and booming too, with staggering low-end oomph and a hunger for all things violent and unruly, and the rear speakers leap into the fray whenever given the chance. Directionality is accurate and involving, cross-channel pans are as smooth as Alan's come-ons to Cassie, and dynamics deliver. Christophe Beck's score doesn't earn much attention in the mix; whether that's because it's so generic or because it's being neglected is unclear. What is clear is that it still all comes together without a hitch. Warner's lossless track has serious kick.
The Hangover Part III Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Blu-ray/DVD/UltraViolet Combo Pack Contents (Subject to Change): The initial combo pack release of The Hangover Part III features a slipcover (with the original pressing), one BD-50 disc, a standard DVD copy of the film, and a Digital HD UltraViolet digital copy (Flixster download via redemption code, expires 10/08/2015). Please note: The Hangover Part III UltraViolet digital copy "does not include an iTunes file, but is compatible with iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and most Android devices."
The Hangover Part III Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
Perhaps in a few years Phillips and company will come up with a worthwhile Hangover sequel. This isn't it. It's better than Part II, I'll give it that, but trumping that disaster isn't much of a feat. The Hangover Part III idles along until, by film's end, you'll be muttering, "that's it? That's all they've got?" So until Part IV becomes a reality -- if it ever becomes a reality (all signs point to no) -- fans will need to cling even tighter to the first film. It may be the only Hangover worth revisiting. At least Warner's Blu-ray release delivers the AV goods. Does it justify the cost of admission? That depends entirely on how devoted you are to the Wolfpack. If you enjoyed Part II, chances are you'll find something to love about Part III. Just don't set your expectations too high.
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The Hangover Part III Blu-ray, News and Updates
• This Week on Blu-ray: October 8-15 - October 6, 2013
For the week of October 8th, Warner Home Entertainment is bringing The Hangover: Part III to Blu-ray. Other titles include the full-length version of Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Joss Whedon's Much Ado About Nothing adaptation, the second American Horror Story ...
• Exclusive Giveaway: The Hangover Part III - October 2, 2013
Blu-ray.com and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment are offering three members the opportunity to win a copy of director Todd Phillips' The Hangover Part III. The third entry in the Wolfpack trilogy stars Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis, Ken Jeong, Heather ...
• The Hangover Trilogy Blu-ray - August 29, 2013
In addition to a standlone BD/DVD/UltraViolet combo pack, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment is releasing The Hangover Part III as part of a Hangover Trilogy box set, which includes all previously released and upcoming special features, as well as an exclusive documentary ...
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