Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay – Turning Over a New Leaf

Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay     B-

Starring John Cho, Kal Penn, and Neil Patrick Harris
Directed by Hayden Schlossberg (Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle)
Rated R for strong crude and sexual content, graphic nudity, pervasive language and drug use
Appropriate for ages 17+

The Story: Leaving off exactly where the first film ended, Harold and Kumar head to Amsterdam so that Harold can have a chance with the love of his life that he doesn’t know yet.  While on the plane, though, Kumar tries to smoke pot on the plane, and the device used gets mistaken for a bomb.  So, the two titular characters are sent to Guantanamo where they immediately escape and begin their journey to clear their tarnished names.

The Good: Even more so than the first flick, this new chapter is one of the most shocking comedies I have seen.  I thought the Apatow bunch was raunchy, but these guys take the cake. 

Some of the humor is intelligent and the audience covered up much of the dialogue with their laughing out loud.  It helps that  Cho, Penn, and NPH are all very likable, and that the writing is extremely over-the-top. 

In a summer where stoner movies attempt to make a comeback (Pineapple Express and The Whackness are soon to hit theaters as well), this is a worthy addition to the genre, and should leave the other pics with big shoes to fill. 

The Bad: As you would expect, this is a silly, silly film filled with sitcom-like plot points that inorganically get you from one scene to the next.  If you want a more intelligent dirty comedy, turn to Forgetting Sarah Marshall, which contains a much better written story with far more convincing performances.  But if Doogie Howser and dime bags are more your thing, then this film will most likely hit the spot. 

The Summary: Harold and Kumar bring us one heck of a guilty pleasure with the next chapter of their stoner saga. 

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