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Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay (2008)

by on 2010/03/13

Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay follows immediately from the end of their White Castleadventure.  En route to Amsterdam the protagonists, mistaken for terrorists, are summarily imprisoned in Cuba.  The bulk of the action follows their misadventures as they escape detention, flee to safety, and attempt to clear their names.

My expectations shifted more than once over the course of this outing.  Initially, I expected a prison-centric focus, given its title.  Furthermore, the previously-dominant themes of escapism and friendship have been joined here — sometimes even overshadowed — by sociopolitical satire.  Eventually brows both high and low find their balance, and deliver an experience comparable to White Castle.

The only real discord for me was an ineffective parody of George W. Bush.  Given the dramatic setup of his appearance, and his small but pivotal role, I was disappointed that nobody more physically or vocally similar could play the part.

Otherwise, I found all the same reasons to cringe and giggle as I did the last time around.  I got more Fugitive than Escape from Alcatraz, but I never felt disappointed or bored. If you liked the original movie, you’ll probably enjoy this one too.

* * *

Rated 18A for adult situations, coarse language, nudity, substance abuse, and violence

107 minutes

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