"Hamlet 2." - DVD Review.

By Bob Zerull

3 1/2 Stars:

My favorite thing about this movie is that they named it "Hamlet 2." The movie was written by Pam Brady ("South Park") and director Andrew Fleming ("Arrested Development"). You can definitely tell that one of the "South Park" writers was behind this movie. It's ridiculous, but extremely fun and funny. "Hamlet 2" stars Steve Coogan ("Tropic Thunder") as the talentless high school drama teacher Dana Marschz. Dana doesn't have a clue about the stage or film.

The movie opens with the entire drama class (all two students) reenacting "Erin Brockovich" on stage. That's how clueless this guy is. The play gets panned by the 13 or 14 year old critic, because the play is not original. He goes home to his alcoholic of a wife, played by Catherine Keener, and their roommate Gary played by David Arquette. One day Dana shows up for class and finds that half the school has registered for his class. They registered for the class because they thought it'd be an easy A. The class resembles something straight out of "Dangerous Minds" or "Freedom Writers," two terrible movies that a guy like Dana would find amazing.

Dana finds out that after the semester the school is going to close down the drama department. He believes that if he writes an original screenplay he'll be able to save the drama department. He pitches his idea for a play called "Hamlet 2" to the 13 or 14 year old film critic. The critics first reaction is how can you create a sequel to "Hamlet," everybody dies at the end? Dana's idea involves a time machine and Jesus Christ.

Dana writes the play in one night. The principal gets a hold of the script and bans the play from being on school grounds. At the same time Dana comes into contact with his all time favorite actress, "Adventures in Babysitting" star Elisabeth Shue, played by Elisabeth Shue. Elisabeth quit acting to become a nurse. She was only in acting for the sex scenes.

Dana gets depressed, his wife runs away with their roommate Gary, and the principal and the students' parents are making it impossible for them to rehearse for this play. The kids all come together to make it happen and lift Dana's spirits. Just as everything starts to fall apart, everything comes together. Amy Poehler plays a lawyer representing Dana (without Dana's consent) claiming that the school is censoring him.

The play is ridiculous as is this movie. Songs by the name of "Raped in the Face" and "Rock Me Sexy Jesus" appear in Dana's play. This movie is definitely not for everybody. If "South Park" offends you then don't waste your time. The movie isn't unbelievably funny, but it's funny and entertaining enough to keep your interest.


Bob Zerull is a frequent movie and concert goer who talks about his ventures to arenas and theaters more than any person should be allowed to do. Now, he puts them down on paper. Email him your thoughts at: bzerull19@gmail.com.

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