A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas

Movie review by
S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media
A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas Movie Poster Image
Popular with kids
Raucous, crude stoner comedy is funny but not for kids.
  • R
  • 2011
  • 90 minutes

Parents say

age 14+
Based on 15 reviews

Kids say

age 16+
Based on 10 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Amid all of the satire and drug- and sex-fueled humor is the idea that good friends look out for each other, through thick and thin. Even when Harold and Kumar start to grow apart, there's really nothing that can take away their many years of companionship.

Positive Role Models & Representations

There's lots of very iffy behavior here, but despite the constant pot smoking, Harold is a responsible (if slightly stiff) family man, and Kumar finally starts to grow up. Some of the movie's humor is based on racial stereotyping.

Violence

Lots of graphic violence, including slit throats, people who are burned, gunshot wounds spurting blood, car crashes, explosions, fires ,and an explicit shot of a man's penis getting maimed. Much of this is meant to contribute to the film's humor, but it's still pretty explicit.

Sex

Many crude sexual references and both male and female nudity (boobs and butts), as well as a few brief on-screen sex scenes and suggested sex acts. Purported images of genitals are presented in a cartoonish way. A man appears to masturbate while giving a back rub to a partially clothed woman. Another man in his 20s spends a lot of time discussing his plans to deflower a virgin, who appears to be either under age or barely of legal age.

Language

Near-constant swearing, including "f--k," s--t," "d--k," "c--k," "p---y," "a--hole," "ass," "hell," "damn," "crap," "goddamn," "oh my God," and lots more.

Consumerism

Several brands get prominent placement, including Apple products, the White Castle fast-food chain, and 3-D TVs.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Too many drug references to count. Harold and Kumar smoke marijuana repeatedly throughout the film. A raucous teen party includes beer-drinking guests who appear to be young enough to be in middle school. Other guests indulge in other drugs, including cocaine and Ecstasy. Harold and Kumar are unwittingly drugged with an unidentified substance that gives them a very vivid hallucinogenic trip. A baby is given several strong drugs (initially accidentally, but later it's less clear), and a recurring gag plays her reactions for laughs.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the third "Harold and Kumar" stoner comedy follows the best pals on a late-night Christmas Eve adventure in which they rediscover their lost friendship ... and, in the process, get really, really high. There are endless scenes featuring drugs and drug references (including a recurring gag with a drug-taking baby), plus tons of swearing ("f--k," "s--t," and much more), graphic violence, crude comments, gratuitous nudity (male and female, boobs and butts), suggestions of underage sex, and teen drinking. All of that said, the film does have heart, and Harold and Kumar's friendship -- as always -- is a strong one.

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byLowe's man February 17, 2016

Know what you're watching.

Although I've never seen this movie and probably should not be reviewing it, if it's anything like their White Castle movie (which I stopped in the mi... Continue reading
Parent of a 6, 15, 15, and 17-year-old Written by79awesome August 20, 2013

Funny

This was not that bad as some people think but way better than the second one. Nudity was pretty harsh. The thing that bothered me was the drug use and I do a... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old June 5, 2016

Very irrerevent and innapropiate.

It's a highly inappropriate Christmas comedy, but it's not an ordinary Christmas comedy at all and is not a family friendly at all. It has lots and LO... Continue reading

What's the story?

Harold (John Cho) and Kumar (Kal Penn), the famous stoner duo, have drifted apart. Harold has become a married Wall Street banker with a house in the suburbs, and Kumar has ... not. He's still a die-hard pot smoker, who lives alone in a filthy apartment. But in A VERY HAROLD & KUMAR 3D CHRISTMAS, a mysterious gift brings the pair back together, and soon they're running through the streets of New York during a wild night of misadventures that features Russian mobsters, a giant killer snowman, a waffle-making robot, and, of course, plenty of drugs. Their mission is to find a Christmas tree, but the real goal is to rediscover their friendship.

Is it any good?

The third installment of the Harold and Kumar franchise is quite funny, even though it goes so very wrong in so many ways. There's the baby who gets dosed with several strong drugs, the accidental shooting of a revered holiday icon, the celebrity who pretends to be gay so he can bed women (the gay-in-real-life Neil Patrick Harris, again playing a debauched version of himself), the racial stereotypes, the underage drinking, and (of course) the over-the-top drug consumption.

Nobody is spared in this stoner comedy, which is part of the reason it works. Also, it has heart. This isn't just a film about getting high; it's a movie about friendship and growing up ... and getting high. Harold and Kumar realize that though they've grown in different directions, they both learn from each other. In the process, they become better friends and better people. (And did we mention they get high?) This film is in 3-D, though not for any obvious reason. If the main goal was to show a giant marijuana smoke ring coming right at the viewers, the filmmakers succeeded. Otherwise, the effect is mostly unnecessary.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the movie's messages about drugs and drug use. Do you think this is an accurate depiction of social attitudes about marijuana? Why or why not? Does the movie address any of the consequences of drug use? As a comedy, is it expected to?

  • Also, how does the movie portray teen sex and drinking?

  • How do Harold and Kumar change over the course of the film? Why is Kumar so reluctant to grow up? Why do you think the friends drifted apart? Does their friendship seem believable? Were drugs really the only thing that could bring them back together?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

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