Mar 28, 2019
Welcome back to our final Certified Fresh cleanup film for the week, this time from our good friend Keith Lyons, who’ll let you know if everything in this film was, in fact, awesome. For a few other stop-motion animated films, check out our reviews for “Loving Vincent” (Episode #175), “Early Man” (Episode #367), and “Isle of Dogs” (Episode #368). I would also highly recommend one of my favorite films from 2017, “Kubo and the Two Strings” for some exquisite stop-motion work. Got any favorites? Let us know by reaching out over social media, or at onemoviepunch.com.
Take it away, Keith!
Hi, Philly Film Fan here with another review for One Movie Punch. Follow me on Twitter at PhillyFilmFan.
Today’s movie is “The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part”, the film directed by Mike Mitchell and written by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. This is actually the fourth film in the Lego-verse, following “The Lego Batman Movie” and “The Lego Ninjago Movie” and it feels like the franchise is starting to suffer from the law of diminishing returns.
Spoilers ahead but only for the first Lego movie.
First of all, let me say that I’m a huge fan of the original Lego movie and “The Lego Batman Movie”. I skipped “The Lego Ninjago Movie” but it seems like most people did too. I love the aesthetic of these films and how the animation is purposely limited to match the movement of the actual toys. ”The Lego Movie 2” gives you more of the same, which makes this enjoyable but somewhat redundant. For instance, this film tries to cash in on the success of “Everything is Awesome”, not only with its own bubblegum pop earworm titled, appropriately “Catchy Song”, but with a reprise of the original tune as well.
One of the things I love most about the original Lego movie is the reveal at the end, which shows us that the entire Lego universe is just a boy playing with his toys (and also clearly working through some daddy issues). Since the cat is already out of the bag on that secret, this film breaks up its “real life” segments, and disperses them throughout the film. Jadon Sand returns to reprise his role of Finn, the boy from the first film and, while Maya Rudolph and Brooklynn Prince are welcome additions to the cast, playing Finn’s mother and sister, their story doesn’t pack the emotional punch of the original.
The voice-over cast of “The Lego Movie 2” is pretty uniformly great. All the characters you love from the first film are back, such as Elizabeth Banks as Wyldstyle, Alison Brie as Unikitty, Nick Offerman as Metalbeard, and Charlie Day as Benny who, with his cracked space helmet, was my favorite Lego toy as a kid. They are joined by a talented batch of newcomers, such as Tiffany Haddish, Stephanie Beatriz, Richard Ayoade, and Ben Schwartz. Chris Pratt both returns as Emmet Brickowski and debuts a new character, Rex Dangervest. Their combined charm allows the film to coast on its recycled material... but, in the end, it’s not enough to elevate this to the heights of the original.
“The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part” is a fun movie that doesn’t really seem like it has a reason to exist. Although I think it has a great message for kids, I can’t help but feel like someone just took all of the elements from the original and rearranged the pieces to make something new.
Rotten Tomatoes: 86% (CERTIFIED FRESH)
One Movie Punch: 6.5/10
“The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part” (2019) is rated PG and is currently playing in theaters.
This jawn was brought to you by Philly Film Fan. For more movie reviews, follow me on Twitter at PhillyFilmFan where I’m participating in the #365Movies challenge. That’s P-H-I-L-L-Y-F-I-L-M-F-A-N.