Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Film Review: A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas (2011)

A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas (Review)
United States/2011
Netflix Streaming: No
Amazon Prime: No

"It really captures the holiday feel through its setting and themes, no matter how cliché."

Estranged friends Harold (John Cho) and Kumar (Kal Penn) reunite after six years of being separated when a mysterious package for Harold arrives at Kumar's home.

Taking place on Christmas Eve, A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas has the stoner duo -- well, the former stoner duo as Harold is now sober -- embark on a journey to find a new Christmas tree after Kumar accidentally destroys the original tree. This journey, of course, includes the usual crazy antics you'd expect: a baby is incidentally introduced to many party drugs, crazy claymation drug trips, an NPH musical and sexual assault, a drug lord hunts Harold and Kumar, which leads to genitalia being frozen on to a pole. The story delivers the raunchy laughs up to its cliché ending. (it's a comedy, so I don't fault it much.)

I really enjoy A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas. In fact, I have been watching it during Christmas time since its release two years ago. It really captures the holiday feel through its setting and themes, no matter how cliché. The comedy in the film, to put it best, is raunchy, stoner comedy. We've got the addition of Adrian (Amir Blumenfeld) and Todd (Thomas Lennon) as the replacement friends, and, being a fan of both, I welcome them with open arms. Anyway, I laughed a lot, and if you like raunchy, inappropriate stoner comedy, I have a feeling you'll enjoy it as well. It's not as funny as the first two installments, though.

The acting is great from the entire cast. Of course, it's a comedy and it's not aiming for any awards, but it seems like the cast had a fun time making the film and that fun was transmitted to me through their heartfelt performances -- and that's saying something. The music is great, perfect for the holiday mood. The film is shot beautifully, the blue tones are a bit too strong, but it looks great. The comedy is consistent, always taking a step towards more absurdity up until the end and using the setting well. (i.e. It doesn't feel like a cheap holiday cash-in.)

Overall, A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas is a great holiday comedy for the adults that love the raunchy comedy genre. With the amount of profanity, nudity, drug use, and violence, I wouldn't recommend this for the entire family, but those that are mature enough to understand and absorb the immaturity should be fine and entertained.

Score: 8/10
Parental Guide: Some violence and blood, drug use and references, excessive profanity, and sex and nudity. (including full male and female frontal)

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