It’s hard to know if Justin Hires is kidding around when he expresses utter confidence in Half-Baked 2 or if he thinks this is truly a good idea. To be fair it’s going to take the effort to see what can be done with the sequel before making any snap judgments, but thinking that it’s going to be about the son of Thurgood Jenkins and that Dave Chappelle, aka Thurgood, is going to have nothing to do with it kind of makes a person think that it might not be quite the same. The idea as to whether any of other characters will return is hard to verify since the movie will need some sort of a connection to the original to really get off the ground, confidence or not, as without any connection it’s likely that Half-Baked 2 will be DOA before it ever arrives. But then there are other things to think about before anything really gets going, and one of them is why we need another Half-Baked movie. The first one didn’t become a cult classic until it hit VHS, and to be realistic it was a funny movie, but the fact that one of the main stars didn’t care for it doesn’t speak well to its staying power. Half-Baked is definitely one of those movies a person can watch while growing up and get a kick out of and even revisit later on in life and enjoy, but apart from that it’s not one that an individual can watch without being stoned or drunk more than once every so often.
The movie is happening and it’s being given a budget that’s five times greater than the original, but one thing that’s been evident for a while is that a greater budget doesn’t necessarily mean that the movie will be that much better. For one reason or another sequels are all the rage right now and movies that were probably best left alone are being given sequels, reboots, remakes, and continuations using themes that were best left to rest. Trying to think around the idea of how to make a Half-Baked 2 isn’t hard, it’s a movie about stoners and how they live and operate while still practicing and somehow affording their habit, or chosen lifestyle, depending on how one wants to look at it. The first movie was a response to a friend being locked up and needing bail money and became just as silly as a lot of people probably expected, but this second one feels as though it might offer up a bit of commentary, even if it’s in a hilarious way, on the continued use of marijuana in the current culture. Given that it’s been legalized in many states since the inception of the first movie it’s hard to say just how this movie is really going to go about the idea of integrating pot use into to the plot and how it will introduce a conflict and a possible resolution.
If there’s anything that’s really feeling half-baked at this point it feels like this movie as a whole since the first movie was funny, engaging, and had a few characters that were very memorable. This sequel thus far sounds like someone’s attempt to prove that they’re just that good and can will a screenplay to work for anyone and everyone that reads it. The fact that it’s coming is more hubris than anything, though to be certain it’s likely to come out and those that make it are possibly going to shout it to the heavens that another movie is coming and that it’s going to be nothing short of awesome. But Hires might want to check his pipes before he starts sounding off, if only because his capability of delivering a solid screenplay for this is a matter of perspective, and while it’s obvious that some folks think this is a great idea, there are plenty of movies out there that were thought to be great ideas, but eventually flopped harder than a clumsy person hitting the sidewalk. The destiny that awaits this movie already sounds kind of uncertain no matter what Hires wants to say, especially given the idea that there’s going to be no Dave Chappelle and it’s uncertain just who will really show up for roll call. If not for the hubris displayed by Hires at this point it might have been a simple ‘meh’ and a possible desire to see just what can be done. But the idea that anyone can simply will a movie into being and almost guarantee that it will be worth watching is kind of laughable, especially when trying to improve on a movie that’s already proven itself funny enough to be a cult classic. Whether he knows it or not, Hires has his work cut out for him, past experiences and successes notwithstanding.
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