If you like your sequels to simply be re-skinned versions of the original, then The Hangover Part 2 is for you. Take the first film, move it from Las Vegas to Bangkok and…that’s it. The cast are the same, do the same things, make the same mistakes, milk the same jokes.
The film makes fun of Zach Galifianakis’ character, and how he’s hung up on the events of the first film. But that’s exactly what this sequel is too, over-obsessed with what happened in part 1, and too frightened to tell a story that differs in any way to the first. A stag night, blokes being blokes, blackouts and confusion, Galifianakis falling over, a camp Korean, Galifianakis making a nonsensical comment, mysterious characters appearing to shed some light on last night before drifting off. But you see, this is in Bangkok, so it’s totally different. The whole film is one massive in-joke. It’s “Hey, remember when the thing happened in part 1? Well look, it’s happening again, But in Bangkok”.
The first film was funny, entertaining, and felt new. The second is unoriginal, so similar to the first that it looks like a poor rip-off. It’s pandering hard to its existing audience, providing none of the freshness that made part 1 a success. Sadly its a big hit, which means a third part is almost a certainty. Set it in space, it’ll still be something we’ve seen before.