Film Review: A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas
● By Wendy Sipple
The main plot of this drugged out frenzy of a film is about Harold’s mad dash around the city in search of a replacement Christmas tree to impress his father-in-law. Kumar, who used to be Harold’s best friend, gets caught up in trying to help Harold find this tree on Christmas Eve and the two rekindle their friendship during their misadventures which includes being hunted by a mafia gang and shooting the real Santa Claus.
I am new to this franchise. I have yet to see the first to movies of this trilogy. Now having seen the third one I am struck by the fact that this is a modern day remake of the classic Cheech and Chong series. This movie revolves around drug jokes. Sure, there was the occasional potty humor joke, but by in large the filmmakers must think that seeing Santa Claus smoke a bong while flying his sleigh is funny stuff. If you think that’s funny, you’ll love a one-year-old smoking weed, sniffing cocaine and doing ecstasy. While I did not laugh a whole lot, the audience I saw it with seemed to laugh a lot, which, for a comedy, is the desired result.
Surprisingly the film tried to sneak in morals to this story. The way these moral lessons were attempted to be delivered I could not honestly tell if it was there for comedy or if the film was sincere in trying to deliver life lessons on responsibility and family devotion while most of the movie featuring morally bankrupt behavior? In the end it doesn’t matter a whole lot because these movies are made to get laughs and not much more, even if the filmmakers made a mild attempt at “family values.”
The 3D was over the top. The 3D was used for laughs and people giggled at the beginning but the 3D gags which are featured for the entire film are at over the top levels. So if you like “eye-popping” 3D where stuff sticks out of the screen at you at any available chance, you’ll love this.
The story started off grounded in reality but around the halfway point the writers lost all interest in playing it straight and the movie drifted into “crazyland.” Weird jokes and characters took center stage including a waffle making robot fighting gangsters with scalding hot syrup, and Santa Claus being shot from the sky and giving out blunts as special gifts. The movie also uses its R rating to show male frontal nudity in more than one scene.
Harold and Kumar definitely has a following and I am assuming most of the people rushing to theaters to see Part Three are fans of the first two, so they know what they’re getting. I can safely say the movie is loaded with juvenile humor, and it doesn’t aspire to be anything more than that. For some that is a great thing.
Films like A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas – Cheech and Chong and Harold and Kumar Parts 1 & 2
Justin Buettner is Style's resident movie dude! How did he get this role? Well, he graduated from Loyola Marymount University with a Bachelor of Arts in film Production and a duel minor in Animation and Business with an emphasis in the entertainment field. He later went on to work on several independent films in various key roles including writer and later worked in the special effects field as a motion capture artist. He has since relocated to the Sacramento area with his family and continues writing for small independent films in addition to his movie reviews for Style Magazine.