By Tyler Gilliam
Whether they’re escaping prison or searching for White Castle, Harold and Kumar are a laugh riot. Reprising their roles from 2004’s cult classic Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle, John Cho (American Pie Trilogy) and Kal Penn (National Lampoon’s Van Wilder, House) deliver more than your run-of-the-mill sequel in Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay.
In this follow-up, we find our heroes on their way to Amsterdam to find Harold’s (Cho) dream girl, Maria, whose full name happens to be Maria Quesa Dilla, played by Paula Graces (Man of the House, National Lampoon’s Pledge This!).
Of course, the trip cannot possibly go off without a hitch because, well, that wouldn’t make for much of a movie would it?
Instead of waiting to reach Amsterdam where weed is legal and in abundance, Kumar (Penn) takes out a high-tech bong on the plane and attempts to join the mile “high” club.
Unfortunately, he is spotted and his bong is mistaken for a bomb.
Before you know it, the two would-be tourists are labeled terrorists and sent to Guantanamo Bay, or G-Bay, as George Bush, played by James Adomian, so lovingly referred to it.
But not even Gitmo could hold Harold and Kumar. The two fugitives are soon on their way back to the States.
With nowhere else to turn, Harold and Kumar head to Texas where an old friend with deep political connections, Colton, played by Eric Winter (Days of Our Lives), may be able to spring them from the terrorism charges. Kumar’s intentions may not be so pure as Colton is about to marry his ex-girlfriend, Vanessa, played by Daneel Harris (One Tree Hill).
Their journey from Cuba to Texas takes them through a pantsless party in Miami, a Klan meeting in Alabama, and ultimately through President Bush’s roof.
Harold and Kumar do all this while running from the Feds, namely from racist, bigot and all-around idiot Ron Fox, played by Rob Corddry (The Daily Show, The Heartbreak Kid). Oh, and they get chased by a cyclops.
The film also stars my own personal hero, Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother, Doogie Howser, M.D.), who reprises his role as himself.
A unicorn-riding Harris once again proved he is a god amongst mere men.
While the first Harold and Kumar went mostly for non-sequiturs and stoner jokes, the second added political satire and racism-the humorous kind of racism, not the “go back to where you came from” racism.
Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay is on par with the first film.
It’s different enough, but clearly follows the Harold and Kumar formula.
There was nothing disappointing, except Rob Corddry, who is a self-acknowledged, walking poop joke.
I’ll put it this way, Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay left me wishing I could have voted for Bush and wanting to visit New Jersey.
I guess you could take that as good or bad, but either way, the very notion that something could make anyone want to go to Jersey is worth a look, maybe even a second look.