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Mixed or average reviews - based on 28 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 46 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Dana Marschz--the last name is pronounced...oh, any attempt is close enough, really--is a failed actor-turned-high school drama teacher. Shortchanged in the talent department, Dana still harbors ambitions and passions. At Tucson, AZ's West Mesa High School, Dana sees himself as an inspirational teacher, but when his department is targeted for closure, Dana must reach deep into himself for creativity. After much perspiration, he conceives a sequel to Shakespeare's Hamlet - a musical-theater extravaganza that will disdain both political correctness and dramatic credibility. With rehearsals underway, objections from school officials and the community are soon raised, but Dana will not be denied his freedom of artistic expression. After all, "to thine own self be true." Dana gets unexpected support from ACLU attorney Cricket Feldstein and his favorite actress, Elisabeth Shue. Above all else, he fervently believes that his opus must be staged, and nothing can break his optimistic spirit. (Focus Features) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 28
  2. Negative: 2 out of 28
  1. As a movie, Hamlet 2 is lively, energetically daft, and very, very scrappy -- a broader, more loony-tunes knockoff of "Waiting for Guffman."
  2. 75
    The movie is an ideal showcase for the talents of Coogan.
  3. 70
    Coogan's screen persona is vain, dim, angry, and deeply miserable, and his handful of scenes here with a smilingly harsh Catherine Keener are little masterpieces of comic sadomasochism.
  4. Not infrequently the movie is as mediocre as its target. The great Steve Coogan movie has yet to be made.
  5. Let's just say that, when the parody looks indistinguishable from the parodied, something's gone awry.
  6. 50
    Not nearly as uproarious as it should be.
  7. 12
    The laughs begin with the excellent title Hamlet 2 - and they end there.

See all 28 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 17
  2. Negative: 3 out of 17
  1. Sep 25, 2010
    Beats hand down most of the hyped independent comedies! Very intelligent, very funny! A real gem! The negative reviews are probably from the Friedberg-Seltzer crowd. Go figure. Expand
  2. jacobR
    Sep 1, 2008
    This movie was so funny couldn't have laughed harder. For the people that say this movie is offensive .... whats wrong with you Jesus kicks Satan in the butt ...and he is damn sexy! Expand
  3. MarkS
    Jan 2, 2009
    Coogan gives a superb performance I did not expect (even though I had been told). The film is hilarious--much funnier than some better-reviewed comedies (e.g. Forgetting Sarah Marshall, or Pineapple Express). And it is far more clever than even its champions give it credit for. I'm amazed people fault the plot (a wonderful send-up of "inspirational teacher" films); no one who understands comedy should level such a criticism, anyway. Comedies exaggerate, take liberties, bizzare segues. While most run-of-the-mill comedies (see anything by an ex-SNL star) start strong and lose steam after a half hour when the plot kicks in, this film is filled with creative set-ups and delivers consistent laughs all the way through. What more can you want? Rock me, sexy Jesus! Expand
  4. DianeM.
    Aug 30, 2008
    I have tried all summer to see a "fun" movie that was also slightly meaningful. This fits the bill. Definitely mature, often extremely silly, but worth the time. Expand
  5. KathyS
    Sep 2, 2008
    Steve Coogan is very funny. Catherine Keener is perfect as his wife. The AA recovering alkie humor is priceless. Can't wait for his next film!
  6. NateH.
    Sep 1, 2008
    I went in sort of expecting a good lampoon of sorts, I mean it has the words "South Park" and "Team America" right on the poster, instead I got a very cliched, by the numbers type of comedy. There were a few good laughs but they only made you realize how mediocre the rest of it was. I'll give credit where it's due, the play was pretty good, just not as hard hitting as I hoped. Expand
  7. JaredC.
    Aug 25, 2008
    A flaw, the movie is needed for no purpose. A highly advising recommendation, first of all don't see this offensive garbage. Second of all, Hamlet 2 is a dish full of rotten apple crisp. Ew! Expand

See all 17 User Reviews