TCM: Friday 23 October, 9.00pm
A Las Vegas bachelor party has gone bad – so Sin City bad that old college buddies Bradley Cooper and Ed Helms, along with baby-packing brother-in-law Zach Galifianakis, have lost groom Justin Bartha. It gets worse: dentist Helms has also lost an incisor (“I look like a nerdy hillbilly”), Cooper has hospital tags, and there’s a crying baby in their hotel room closet.
Bad memories come flooding back in a flashback comedy from Road Trip director Todd Phillips. So it’s crude and juvenile, but funny. “Don’t let him gamble… or drink,” Bartha says of blackjack Rain Man Zach. “Jeez,” says Cooper, “he’s like a Gremlin, with instructions.” Helms is bemused, too – “Make him stop!” – when Zach uses a knife for a blood-brothers pact.
The moment that made me choke on my popcorn was when Bradley Cooper asks the busy hospital doctor about the Best Little Chapel: “Do you happen to know where that is?” “Yeah, I do,” says the doctor. “It’s at the corner of Get a Map and Fuck Off.” It gets increasingly raucous and obnoxious, but all in the good cause of comedy.
And don’t panic… the tiger in the bathroom is housetrained, and three sets of twins and a dummy were used to portray the baby. The inevitable 2011 sequel was more like a Hostel horror show than a comedy, but for sloppy seconds it’s funny all the same. All the same being the operative phrase, of course. The guaranteed gag-free Part III was the party pooper.