The undisputed champion of comedy in 2009, "The Hangover" is a must-see if you haven't, and a must-see-again if you have.
If you've been in a pit in someone's basement since May, "Hangover" centers around three pals: Phil (Bradley Cooper in a star-making performance), Stu (Ed Helms of " The Office") and Alan (Zack Galifianakis, in another star turn) who take their friend Doug (Justin Bartha) to Vegas two nights before his wedding for a wild bachelor bash.
Cut to the next morning, when the trio wake in their dishevelled hotel room. Stu is missing a tooth, there's a baby in the room, a (real) tiger in the bathroom, and none of them remember what's happened.
They also don't know where Doug is.
The rest of the film is a wild, chaotic detective story as the three try to find out where their friend is, what they did the night before, and why they don't remember anything.
Each scene escalates the film's comedic tension, including the revelation that the tiger belongs to Mike Tyson, Stu (who is in an unhealthy relationship of his own) gets married to an escort (Heather Graham), and there's a small Asian man (Ken Jeong) in the trunk of their car.
Much of the fun of the film is wondering what will happen next, piecing together the events of the previous night, and seeing the trio finding themselves in more and more trouble as the movie wears on.
"Hangover" is the perfect union of tremendous main characters (especially Galifianakis, who steals the show as the bearded manchild who is lacking social skills), a novel gimmick (which in a way gives a "Memento" vibe with its backtracking narrative), and a wonderful supporting cast (Jeong and Tyson are both inspired in their appearances, as is Mike Epps in a smaller role).
The DVD extras are robust and worthwhile, including a fun and interesting commentary track from director Todd Phillips ("Old School"), Galifiankis, Helms and Cooper, a gag reel, a Ken Jeong-centric outtakes reel, more end credits photos, and a feature on The Dan Band, who returns from "Old School" to play another wedding in "Hangover."
Perhaps most novel, though, is an interactive map that shows where in Vegas key events in the film took place, complete with clickable links that expands on the locations.
Film: 5 Yaps (of 5) Extras: 4.5 Yaps (of 5)
Read Nick Rogers' review of "The Hangover" here.