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Hamlet 2 Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0

    out of 100

    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 60

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal

    Mostly, though, there's the endlessly resourceful, endlessly inventive, bedazzling Mr. Coogan. Hamlet Schmamlet. Not since "Death of a Salesman" has failure been quite so entertaining.

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  • 60

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter

    Attaining somewhat of a bad parody of a comedy, screenwriters Andrew Fleming and Pam Brady have slapped together a string of gags in a hit-and-miss dither. Some of it is quite brainy.

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  • 63

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    Elisabeth Shue has a strange role as a version of herself who has given up acting for nursing.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    The movie is an ideal showcase for the talents of Coogan.

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  • 83

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    As a movie, Hamlet 2 is lively, energetically daft, and very, very scrappy -- a broader, more loony-tunes knockoff of "Waiting for Guffman."

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Iffy for 15+

High school theater spoof lacks some spark.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that although this comedy is set in high school, it's not really a "teen comedy." In fact, it takes a no-holds-barred approach to poking fun at religion, theater, commercialism, racism, reproductive technologies, actors, the ACLU, and anything and everything else. One song is centered on a "rock star" version of Jesus, and there are plenty of jokes that some people may consider crude or vulgar. There are also scenes of underage drinking and drug use, a flash of a man's naked backside, and plenty of salty language.

  • Families can talk about the message behind all the over-the-top humor: Why is Marschz compelled to stage one more play, and an original one at that? What's the message of the play? Also, what prejudices does the film make fun of? Does it do an effective job of making its point? What would you say that point is? What genres is the movie satirizing?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: A teacher swears in front of his students and accidentally hurts one of them; they clearly show no respect for him (they call him "moron," among other things). His wife belittles him, too. But he doesn't give up hope. In fact, in his own blissfully ignorant way, he manages to inspire and free his inner artist. The movie mercilessly mocks everything from the theater crowd to religion. Infidelity is treated humorously.

What to watch for
  • violence false1

    Violence: A man contemplates suicide; some brawls erupt; a girl keeps falling and getting hit by objects.

  • sex false3

    Sex: Conversations about the mechanics of getting pregnant, some kissing, lewd jokes. A man's naked backside is flashed -- he has writer's block and takes off his pants to get inspiration -- and there are allusions to his "balls" being flashed.

  • language false4

    Language: Language includes plenty of salty words, including "s--t" and "f--k." Not as frequent as some other R-rated movies, though.

  • consumerism false1

    Consumerism: Mentions of various Hollywood movies (Erin Brockovich, The Karate Kid, etc.); actress Elisabeth Shue is revered. And of course, Hamlet is referenced often. Also, Jack LaLanne products and fake commercials for herpes medications.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false3

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Teens drink while out with their teacher; they later spike his non-alcoholic beverage with LSD or another psychedelic; his wife drinks a gigantic margarita.