Try as Phillips may, there’s absolutely nothing new to see here. Oh sure, there’s been lots of supposed controversy over a much publicized cameo appearance. It was originally supposed to have been played by Mel Gibson and has since gone on to be covered by Nick Cassavetes. I’m not exactly sure how this counts as a cameo anymore when absolutely no one in the target audience will even know who he is.
The only thing that comes close to a real cameo is Paul Giamatti playing a seedy character named Kingsley who’s in need of bank account numbers and access codes that Mr. Chow (Jeong) has stashed in the vest of a drug running, cigarette smoking monkey. This subplot is so extraneous it defeats the purpose of even being in the film. Every scene is supposed to contain some kind of clue as to what happened during the group’s blackout, but not one thing here pertains to anything else. It’s a huge ten minute gap that could have so easily been excised for whatever is going to wind up on the unrated Blu-ray release anyway.
In the end, as I said before, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Warner Bros. knows they have a good thing going here. The cast is fully engaging and give it their all in spite of pretty much simply remaking the original in a new city. But while the first one contained so much freshness, here it comes off as repetitive. Especially if you just recently rewatched the original as I did last week. However, everything works to make for a crowd pleasing raucous time at the movies.
It’s just a shame that this will probably outgross the far superior Bridesmaids in its opening weekend when all it really does is just outgross the movie if you get what I mean. There’s already been talk of interest in making a third to close everything as a trilogy as the word continually gets thrown around in Hollywood like it does these days. If they don’t come up with something better than this next time, it’ll be a good thing they only thought about taking that far.
Photos courtesy Warner Bros. Pictures