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May 23, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

The latest Hangover movie is getting a jump on its primary rival — the latest Fast and Furious movie — at the Memorial Day weekend box office by opening tonight (Thursday). It may need it. Writes Stephen Holden in the New York Times: “As the expectant audience at the screening I attended waited for The Hangover Part III to explode into action with the usual lewd gross-out antics, only a few scattered laughs could be heard, along with much grumbling after the final credits. For The Hangover Part III … is a dull, lazy walkthrough.” Once a critics’ favorite, the franchise’s third installment is not being battered so much as brushed off. As Michael Phillips puts it in the Chicago Tribune, the movie is “just instantly forgettable. It won’t take much to sleep this one off.” To Ty Burr in the Boston Globe, “It’s not terrible. It’s just bad.” Kyle Smith in the New York Post writes that it “hits you with all the force of a warm can of O’Doul’s.” (He awards it half a star.) Betsy Sharkey in the Los Angeles Times, who says she thought the original Hangover felt “caustic, clever, comical and slightly subversive,” concludes that with the latest episode, “the comedy has left the building.” Steven Rea in the Philadelphia Inquirer opines that director Todd Phillips has managed “to hammer the nails in the coffin of his hit franchise.” Likewise Rafer Guzmán in Newsday concludes: “Rarely has such a beloved comedy franchise been so coldly put to death. The closest equivalent might be when cartoonist Robert Crumb killed Fritz the Cat with an icepick to the head.”