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Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay (2008)

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After being mistaken for terrorists and thrown into Guantánamo Bay, stoners Harold and Kumar escape and return to the U.S., where they proceed to flee across the country with federal agents in hot pursuit.
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Cast overview, first billed only:
John Cho ... Harold
Kal Penn ... Kumar
Rob Corddry ... Ron Fox
Jack Conley ... Deputy Frye
Roger Bart ... Dr. Beecher
Neil Patrick Harris ... Neil Patrick Harris
Danneel Ackles ... Vanessa (as Danneel Harris)
Eric Winter ... Colton
Paula Garcés ... Maria (as Paula Garces)
Jon Reep ... Raymus
Missi Pyle ... Raylene
Mark Munoz ... Cyrus
James Adomian ... George W. Bush
Beverly D'Angelo ... Sally
Echo Valley Echo Valley ... Tits Hemingway


The morning they return from their White Castle road trip, Harold and Kumar decide to go to Amsterdam because Harold doesn't want to wait ten days to see Maria again. On the plane, Kumar lights up his new bong, the air marshals think it's a bomb, and Harold and Kumar are arrested as terrorists and sent to Guantanamo Bay. Ordered to fellate a guard, they manage to escape, make their way to Florida, and head for Texas to find Kumar's ex-girlfriend's fiancé, the well-connected Colton, and get him to intercede with Washington on their behalf. Kumar still has a thing for Vanessa, the feds are in hot pursuit, and the legal weed of Amsterdam seems a long way away. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


What would NPH do? See more »


Adventure | Comedy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong crude and sexual content, graphic nudity, pervasive language and drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »





English | Spanish | French

Release Date:

25 April 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Harold & Kumar Go to Amsterdam See more »


Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$14,908,404, 27 April 2008, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$38,087,366, 13 July 2008
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


(unrated) | (theatrical)

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital | DTS



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The mask Harold pulls out of Neil Patrick Harris' bag is the same as the one worn by Chris Fehn from the band Slipknot. See more »


In the skydiving scene Kumar "swims" towards Harold. In free fall, you can't swim through the air, flailing your arms and legs just destabilizes yourself. To get two people together, all you have to do is face downwards and towards each other. See more »


[first lines]
Kumar Patel: [taking a dump] Oh God, dude!
Harold Lee: [in shower] What the fuck? What the fuck? What are you doing?
Kumar Patel: I'm taking the most incredible dump of all time, man.
Harold Lee: You couldn't wait until I got out of the shower?
Kumar Patel: Um, may I remind you that we both just ate 30 burgers and 4 large orders of fries?
[continues to take a dump]
Kumar Patel: Don't worry, in a little bit I'm sure it'll hit you too.
Harold Lee: Maybe, but I'm going to wait until you get out of the shower!
Kumar Patel: Well don't wait too long. We gotta leave for the airport in an ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the credits "No Person or entity associated with this film received payment or anything of value, or entered into any agreement, in connection with the depiction of tobacco products." See more »

Alternate Versions

An unrated version was released on DVD which contains alternate and extended scenes. See more »


Referenced in Jeopardy!: Episode #26.27 (2009) See more »


Written and Performed by Lily Frost
Courtesy of Aporia Records
By Arrangement with Third Side Music, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Still very funny, but not as enjoyable as the first film
25 April 2008 | by DonFishiesSee all my reviews

I randomly watched Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle in theatres in summer 2004 not expecting much. But I ended up actually being kind of impressed by how funny and unique it was, especially for how stereotypical and ridiculous the movie sounded (another stoner road movie?). Now we are four years later, and surprisingly for such a small film, there is a sequel. And unique is what it continues to be.

Picking up mere hours after the first film, Harold (John Cho) and Kumar (Kal Penn) are traveling to Amsterdam to follow Harold's dream girl, Maria (Paula Garcés). While on the plane, Kumar attempts to get high, but ends up sending the passengers and crew into a panic when they think he has a bomb. They re-route back to the States, where Homeland Security decides they are both terrorists, and sends them to the infamous titular prison. And as the title suggests, they escape, and spend the rest of the movie averting the law and attempting to clear their names.

There is not really much to the plot of the movie, but then again, there was not much to the original either. Instead of spending the movie getting into all kinds of random situations while searching for a White Castle, they spend this movie trying to stay out of the hands of Homeland Security. I was actually kind of weirded out by how political the film gets at times, but the idea of the film begs for there to be an inherent political context. And while there are a few lingering moments when the film submerges itself a bit too heavy handed into the political realm and parodies some of the most ridiculous things we have heard in the news about the government and Homeland Security, the film manages to stay very light and flaky when it comes to being serious. It does not want to be a message film (such as films like Lions for Lambs and Rendition), but merely a means of expressing some humour about ridiculous ideas we can only read about.

I liked that it continued the formula of pursuing the ending goal, and sticking to it (with many interjections along the way), but I thought the entire subplot involving a love interest for Kumar, played by Danneel Harris. It makes for some intriguing character development, and obviously leads to some key plot points in the movie, but it just felt a bit too contrived and clichéd for my liking. The subplot distracts from the key goal (even though it is heavily intertwined), but it just never pulled through the way I hoped it would. It even manages to address things that only get mere mentions instead of usable screen time (including one of the biggest laugh-out-loud moments in the entire film, which lasts for mere seconds). Doing away with her, or using her to a much lesser degree, could have only made this film shorter and leaner, as opposed to its slightly lengthy final version.

What did surprise me was that few jokes were repeated from the original film (minus the nods to the seemingly stronger than expected continuity), but a lot continue the trend of drug and sex jokes. Thankfully, much like the first film, the majority of them stick and are downright hilarious. Some reviewers may say they merely smiled at these jokes. But if you had any interest in the original film, chances are you may get slight convulsions at some of the things said and done here. A lot of them are not very original, but the cast makes them work wonderfully.

But unfortunately, the film plays it a little too fast and easy with the stereotype and racist jokes. I laughed at many of these jokes, but there were a few too many that bordered on bad taste, and a few that were just not funny at all. I realize the original film relied on jokes like these, but it never became a crutch for the film to walk on. This film seems to need it to drag itself around in certain areas, and did not need to have nearly as many of these style jokes. The sheer number of racist jokes that were just retreads of the past thirty years of cinema were too numerous to even try and count. It never got to the point of disgusting me, but simply disheartened me at the lengths the creators were willing to stoop to for slight chuckles.

Cho and Penn work magic together again in this film. They truly are an odd couple for the new century. They are not quite a profanity-laced/drug-infused version of Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau, but their chemistry on screen is better than most romantic comedy couplings. They have a natural rhythm together, and work off each other greatly. There is a genuine partnership at work here, and never once does it seem like either is strained or out of their element in their roles. They play their characters very straight and narrow, and even at the most ridiculous of moments, stay in character and stay funny (unlike other actors in similar comedies). Kudos to both for continuing to prove their worth as able-bodied comedic actors.

The rest of the main cast is a bit of a mixed bag. Garcés is barely in the movie, and Harris is really not that much of a treasure. Eric Winter and Roger Bart do alright in limited roles, while Rob Corddry hams it up a bit too hard (and is the perpetrator of the most stereotyping unfortunately). But of course, much like the first film, Neil Patrick Harris does a scene-stealing parody portrayal of himself, and nails every laugh he comes into contact with.

While it is not as surprising as the first film, this sequel is still a worthwhile piece of entertainment. It has plenty of laughs, but just do not expect anything wholly original.


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