Directed by Danny Leiner, starring John Cho, Kal Penn, Paula Garcés, Neil Patrick Harris and Christopher Meloni.
Harold Lee (Cho) is a hard-working investment banker who finds his helpfulness being taken for granted by his colleagues. His Indian roommate Kumar (Penn) feels he's being pushed into a medical career by his father, while he just wants to chill out. Said chilling out involves a bag of marijuana and a burger from their favourite hamburger place White Castle.
So, Harold and Kumar set out on a quest to get some White Castle burgers, a task that sounds easy, but is far from it. Uptight Harold and laid back Kumar find themselves embroiled in one misadventure after another, from being arrested by prejudiced cops to getting rescued by a religious woodsman named Freakshow ('Law and Order: Special Victim's Unit' star Christopher Meloni, surprisingly) and even having their car stolen by television's Doogie Howser (Harris).
No social grouping or ethnic minority is safe from the scriptwriters' derision here. From hard-working but down-trodden Koreans to nouveau-riche, apathetic Indian Americans and white trash religious zealots, 'Harold and Kumar...' is indiscriminate in its parodying.
It does it very well early on. The scenes where Harold finds himself landed with his colleagues' work at the weekend and Kumar is having his medical school interview are funny because they're understated. As soon as they get out on the road though, things start to get weird instead of funny.
The meetings with Freakshow and Neil Patrick Harris are so bizarre - and sometimes quite disgusting - that the humour turns sour. The movie goes too far in its attempt to send up basically everybody and that’s when bewilderment sets in.
There are some very funny lines and witty observations, but they get lost in the drug-induced weirdness that is 'Harold and Kumar Get the Munchies'.