A Very Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas is everything it needs to be. The latest installment in the stoner-comedy saga stays true to their well-known form, while still giving us everything we look for in a Christmas comedy.
But don’t think you’re about to see Elf; with a drugged out toddler, hallucinatory claymation sequence, and Jesus kicking back a couple shots in his father’s afterlife-club, it’s not a Christmas comedy for all ages. And that’s exactly why I love it.
Six years since their release from Guantanamo Bay, Harold (John Cho) is now a straight-laced Wall Street executive who wants nothing more than to please his terrifying new father-in-law, after the family’s sudden arrival to the suburbs for Christmas weekend. Kumar (Kal Penn) is still living in the duo’s old apartment, lost in a pile of trash, junk, and paraphernalia.
After years of disconnect, a mysterious package brings our adventurers together; let the hi-jinks begin.
A much, much, much more painful Christmas Story-like moment.
Neil Patrick Harris.
It is absurd without ever feeling too ridiculous. It even borders on sentimental, but never fully goes there.
The film is so quick, you never have time to fully indulge in any moment. So if you don’t like something that is happening, don’t worry. Wait just a minute, and you’ll like what’s coming next.
Especially the 3D.
Because why not? It’s fun to see a burning a Christmas tree shatter through panes of glass, or a John Woo-style raw egg-battle coming out of the screen. It’s a perfect example of how more and more films will utilize 3D technology to heighten the cinematic experience, without having to be Avatar (and don’t worry, they will reference this fact many times throughout H&K).
After a final stint with Old Saint Nick that I won’t give away, the film wraps with a more mature Harold and Kumar. Their characters have grown up with their audience. Once the munchie-driven mess we were in college, we now have jobs, homes, and are starting families. Harold and Kumar tell us it’s okay to have responsibilities, and still have fun. They are older so their adventures will be different – but there will be adventures.
Harold and Kumar is a no-holds-barred comedy that wants its audience to have a good time without pandering to them. It wants you to sit back, be enveloped by 3D smoke rings, and go for a thrilling ride. To be perfectly honest, when the credits started to roll, I actually clapped.
– Perry Allen