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The Hangover

Four mates head off to party town Vegas for a stag do – I mean, what could go wrong? Rather more than you might think in this occasionally coarse but always engaging buddy comedy.

You know that things are likely to go awry from the moment bridegroom Doug (Justin Billings) is handed the keys to his prospective father-in-law hands him the keys to his pride and joy – a vintage Mercedes convertible.

There’s another piece of family baggage going along for the ride too – the bride’s dysfunctional brother Alan (Zach Galifianakis) – a bachelor weirdo whose idea of dressing up for a big night out is to sling on a T-shirt and wear a man bag.

Not that Doug’s other party pals are doing that well either. There’s hacked off pretty boy teacher (Bradley Wenneck) who can’t wait to get away from his wife and kid, and Stu (Justin Bartha), seemingly doomed to marry his control freak fiancée Melissa (Rachael Harris).

There’s plenty in here about male bonding and a bloke’s fear of commitment, but The Hangover is really an update of those dark, urban comedies of the 1980’s like After Hours, albeit with New York transplanted to Party City USA.

This is the ultimate fantasy town where your wildest dreams can come true, but these fellas it becomes a place of nightmares as the guys wake up trashed after their big night out – and unable to find their mate who is due to get married in just a few hours time.

With numerous improbable twists, including an oddball cameo from Mike Tyson as himself and Heather Graham as a hooker with a heart, this is great thriller material, but enriched with loads of great gags - some of them decidedly un-PC.

Not to everyone’s taste I suspect, but for my money this is comedy of the year so far.

Watch the trailer here

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