Friday, 30 May 2008

Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay Review

Its been a long time since I was in love with the little green whore (thanks JC for the best summing up of marijuina I've heard in a long time) but I still get little pangs for it even after two years divorce. I can sometimes do the Howard Marks thing of thinking about feeling baked when straight and experiencing a little high but the days of living a smoke fuelled haze are now long behind me. Still, watching Harold and Kumar bong their way through another eventful week is akin to showing Pete Doherty a recut edition of Trainspotting with the nasty bits taken out.

Starting off only minutes after the first film ends, helpless Harold and hapless Kumar are on their way to Amsterdam to find Harolds newly aquired ladyfriend. As Kumar quips, "Its gonna be exactly like Eurotrip only its not gonna suck." Well if they had just spent the film getting wasted in The Dam it probably would have sucked, more than a Dyson on full pelt. Thankfully though the same kind of ridiculously ridiculous turns of luck that fell upon them in the first film return for the second outing.

The original was such a pleasant surprise, walking that thin line between stupidity and genius, that word of a sequel made me go all funny in the head. And while it might not quite live up to its predecessor there's still a ton of fun to be had. From Guantanamo Bay to the Deep South, from KKK rallies to the Presidents gamesroom, whenever Harold and Kumar are on screen together you're guaranteed a chortle. Kal Penn as Kumar has some astonishingly good comic timing so much so that I'd struggle to find someone of his age that I'd cast in this kind of role above him. As the straighter of the two John Cho has less to do, but as Hardy, Wise, Little and Dec would attest its a harder job to pull off.

Theres a little bit of shark jumping when the pair land in POTUS's house and the politics is played a touch too preachy at times but the nods to White Castle (Or Get the Munchies for us brits) are never overly done as you'd imagine they would be with such an inbuilt audience. Having Doogie come back might smack of unoriginality to some but when you're blessed with a character who can mine more comedy gold than a million Kutchers, you don't leave him sitting on the shelf. The best moment for me though sums up the puerile nature of this laugh a minute treat. When Harold kicks some obnoxious A-hole in the balls they drop to the floor unable to contain a little fart. Even completely wasted it shouldn't be funny. But it is.

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