A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas (2011)

very harold and kumar 3d christmas poster review
7.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 8/10

A smart script that mocks and honors holiday and 3D films

Seeing it in 2D just doesn't seem to have the same effect

Movie Info

Movie Name:  A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas

Studio:  New Line Cinema

Genre(s):  Comedy/Seasonal

Release Date(s):  November 4, 2011

MPAA Rating:  R

very harold and kumar 3d christmas cocaine baby

Cocaine, kids, and Christmas…everything you need for the holidays

Harold Lee (John Cho) and Kumar Patel (Kal Penn) were the best of friends.  They shared adventures and spent the days getting stoned…but then Harold married Maria (Paula Garcés).  Feeling abandoned, it has been years since Harold even saw Kumar, but the magic of Christmas is about to bring them together again.  When Kumar receives a mysterious gift for Harold at his apartment, he decides to deliver it and in the process creates a Christmas crisis for Harold.  As Harold and his “new” friend Todd (Thomas Lennon) try to fix the problem before Harold’s Christmas loving (and scary) father-in-law Carlos (Danny Trejo) gets home, Kumar and his “new” friend Adrian (Amir Blumenfeld) are out to solve the same problem…but Christmas Eve is a night where anything can happen…especially to Harold and Kumar.

Directed by Todd Strauss-Schulson, A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas (also just called A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas or Harold & Kumar 3) is a holiday comedy.  Following Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay in 2008, the film is third film in the series and was met with relatively positive reviews.

very harold and kumar 3d christmas neil patrick harris musical

No one sings, dances, and gets the women like Neil Patrick Harris!

Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle was a fun, goofy movie that didn’t take itself very seriously.  Like a modern take of Cheech & Chong, it was of course adopted by stoners, but it also found a wider audience.  In this movie, the stoner movie morphs into a Christmas movie and mocks the popular trend of 3D.

The story (like the other Harold & Kumar stories) is full of a lot of nonsense and intentionally anti-PC events.  You get children getting high and stoned, sexual harassment that almost leads to a rape, and a pancake robot that is a lifesaver.  The movie even comes to a surreal ending with Santa Claus (who also enjoys a nice toke) helping save the day after accidentally being shot by the heroes.

very harold and kumar 3d christmas claymation

Remember when Frosty killed Rudolph?

Since the release of the first movie, both John Cho and Kal Penn have done well so returning for a third Harold & Kumar is almost “slumming it”, but they quickly remind you of their roots and just have fun with the film (even joking about Penn’s position as Principal Associate Director in Obama’s White House Office of Public Engagement).  They are joined by a fun supporting cast including Danny Trejo in a comedic role, Elias Koteas, Thomas Lennon, Patton Oswalt, Eddie Kaye Thomas, David Krumholtz, Richard Riehl, and RZA.  The movie incorporated Neil Patrick Harris’s return after his apparent death in the second Harold & Kumar (there was a resurrection scene), but also play with the fact that Harris came out in 2006 (which went against his character)…and like the rest of the movie, they had fun with it.

very harold and kumar 3d christmas santa claus sleigh

Santa goes flying!

The movie is literally in your face.  In 2011, the 3D boom was big (in not already starting to show some decline) and the movie makes fun of it.  The film repeatedly has things coming toward the camera like eggs and other projectiles that in a normal film would be fired and ignored…here, they are glorified to a ridiculous extent poking fun at the 3D technology.  It also has a nice “Claymation” segment to tie in to shows like Rudolph and Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town.

A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas actually is a decent Christmas movie about friends and family.  It is wrapped in an “I don’t care” type stoner persona, but it largely says the same things as other holiday favorites say.  It is crude and definitely not family oriented, but it is a fun addition to the “off” holiday movies that you can enjoy for a change…it has yet to be seen if Harold & Kumar will ride again, but I’ll definitely be there for it.

Related Links:

Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle (2004)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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