“A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas” is not your typical holiday film; but it is by far one of the most hilarious ones.
The duo returns to theaters in this R-Rated 3D stoner comedy-holiday film, directed by Todd Strauss-Schulson, written by Hayden Schlossbery and Jon Hurwitz, and starring John Cho (Harald Lee), Kal Penn (Kumar Patel), and the rest of the goofy cast. For those that have seen the previous Harold & Kumar movies, you can expect the same cheerfully offensive ethnic stereotyping, nudity, excessive drug use, graphic language content, along with naked nuns, and sacrilegious Jesus and Virgin Mary reenactments.
The main plot involves Harold and Kumar on a search to replace Harold’s father-in-law’s Christmas tree that Kumar burnt down with a magical joint. However, during their search, they are drugged by under aged teens, chased by Ukrainian mobsters, and put in multiple situations that not only compromise their safety, but their lives as well.
The movie starts off with Kumar Patel (Kal Penn) visiting Santa at the mall; who we later discover is actually a drug dealer that sells him marijuana in the parking garage. After finding out his girlfriend is pregnant and getting a mysterious package for his ex-roommate, he decides to visit Herald to deliver the package. After opening the package, the two were shocked to find a gigantic joint packaged inside of it.
Things make a turn for the worst when Kumar decides to smoke the joint and accidentally burns down the Christmas tree Herald’s father-in-law worships.
In the last two movies, Herald and Kumar were very close friends, however, in this movie the two have grown distant over the years. Kumar no longer is pursuing a career as a doctor, has poor hygiene, and lives in a messy apartment. In contrast to Kumar’s life, Herald is now married to Maria, played by Paula Garcés, owns a huge house, and has a successful career with a window office.
The jobless pothead image seems to fit Kal Penn well on screen; however, off screen he works as Associate Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement. Nonetheless, his acting skills are superb in the comedy department.
In the previous films, Penn’s character Kumar is a remarkably intelligent and gifted surgeon that frequently smokes marijuana and hangs out with his best friend Harold Lee. However, in this film, he is a jobless pot-smoker that is dealing with the pressure from the news of his girlfriend Vanessa, played by Danielle Harris, being pregnant.
Penn’s acting in this film was very comical and you could easily relate to the character, as well as believe that this person truly lived the life of a stoner.
Contrary to Kumar, Harold is no longer the shy and nervous person he used to be. John Cho displays Harold as an ambitious businessmen who is ready to start a family with his newly-wed wife Maria
The directors decision to make this modern day Cheech and Chong film in 3D was an excellent one. The 3D moments were visually stimulating and helped the audience to engage further into the movie. Moments with the giant phallus and magical 3D smoke blown at the audience were points in the movie that had that wow factor.
There were unexpected parts like the Claymation scene. Now a days, Claymation is not often used in films, but it was very creative and extremely funny to watch. As someone who finds 3D a little distasteful, I found the effects very effective in improving the quality of the movie.
Just like with the previous films, 3D has shameless ethical jokes involving Mexicans, Koreans, and Indians, but they’re all presented in a charming way that makes each tolerable.
A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas was both hilarious and entertaining. For those that have been waiting 4 long years for the return of this duo, you wouldn’t be disappointed with this movie.