My List: Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle (2004)

Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle.jpg

Rating:   9/10

I thought now that I’ve got 50+ entries from the list I’d start my own list. Mostly because there’s a lot of things I’ve noticed aren’t on this list and deserve to be watched before you die, I was fine with this at first, but then I started watching the movies listed and there’s been just as many movies that aren’t deserving as there are that should be there. I don’t really care about this list, but I’d thought I’d start this special segment where I recommend movies that think people should watch before they die.

So here we are! Though I could have started with something fancy, like Punch-Drunk Love or Chasing Amy, I didn’t want to watch those movies tonight. Here’s a stoner comedy that’s as smart as it is low-brow. It’s about a couple of dudes, played by John Cho and Kal Penn, fresh out of college, trying to discover their place in the world, and all they really want is some burgers from the fast-food chain White Castle. What they have to do to get there is as crazy as it is life changing for the characters involved. But the question is, in order to get those tasty burgers will they have to murder?….No, no they won’t. It’s not that kind of movie.

Though much of the humor is of the lowest form and that’s not normally something I like, this movie has such a quick pace. It starts off interesting, developing characters as quickly as it gets the plot moving. It doesn’t waste any time and uses its 90 minutes to the fullest. The jokes are quick too and as they try to get to White Castle, or more weed, or whatever other troubles they might run into, as soon as one thing is over the next thing starts, and it all comes back around in the end. It’s a perfect “hero’s journey” in the Carl-Sagan-y sense. And though the jokes are cheap, really its a veiled social commentary and parody on how people react to the things that they consider different. It doesn’t really ask big questions though and instead uses it more as a backdrop to some great laughs. Though everything is smartly written, sociology class this ain’t.

Why you should watch it before you die: What it is though is some great comedy with a perfect pace. Considering how rare either of those things are, I think it’s more than worth a watch.

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