The Hangover: Part II Laughs All The Way To The Bank
Despite mainly negative and scathing reviews, The Hangover: Part II is an absolute box office success, having made a whopping total of $137.4 million through Monday. This total makes it the best opening of all time for a comedy and the highest total ever for an R-rated film during its first five days of release. The message Hollywood can take from such an incredibly strong opening is that comedies are financially viable and can rake in the dough just as well as blockbuster action films or Oscar-worthy dramas. Hopefully, Hollywood is listening.
The film—which features Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, and Zach Galifianakis reprising their roles from the original—also made nearly $60 million overseas, including $16.4 million in the U.K. alone, which makes it the best U.S. opening in U.K. history. With numbers like this, it would seem likely a third installment of the series would begin production soon enough (perhaps this one will actually have the rumored Mel Gibson or President Clinton appearances?), but with all the money the film made and the negative reviews it got, one has to wonder if the masses are feeling buyer’s remorse.
Widely panned, The Hangover: Part II was seen as a carbon copy of the first by most. Others noted the film took on a much darker and meaner feel than the first, which was more of a fun-loving joyride. It seems the same format and basic sequence of events were used with minor changes within the plot and a change of location (from Vegas to Thailand). Those minor changes have led some to ask if the filmmakers were lazy or, even worse, arrogant in the making of this film.
All that said—if the filmmakers were lazy, arrogant, or both while developing the movie—they certainly seem to have a right to be. Regardless of the derivative nature of the second film, most of the audience was probably drawn to the sequel on the strength of the original. Will they be similarly drawn to a third?
It wouldn’t surprise me one bit if we found out soon enough.