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The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part – Movie Review

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The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part – Movie Review

Rating: A- (Great)

Trailer/Thumbnail Courtesy Warner Bros. Pictures

Five years ago, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller took those famous Danish building bricks and created a hilarious ode to creativity that showed their incredible storytelling potential. These were eventually followed by a few spin-offs centering on other LEGO properties, but there is now a straight sequel continuing immediately where the first movie left off. With Mike Mitchell directing, joined by Lord and Miller as screenwriters, those thoughtful themes remain intact as The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part expands with new ideas and characters. The humour is on point and the animators have done a remarkable job of bringing the LEGO minifigs to life.

The central thesis is evident early on with the establishing of Finn’s sister joining the playtime. Mitchell mounts an extremely funny opening with Duplo blocks causing destruction on Bricksburg. Even the concept of a post-apocalyptic society has a freshness to it, despite the filmmakers obviously parodying Mad Max: Fury Road. The movie wonderfully shows Emmet’s sincere optimism and there’s a relatable element to how everyone else tries to convince him to be more cynical and brooding. That adds a further dynamic to his relationship with Wyldstyle, along with the friendship he later forms with macho Rex Dangervest. Just the thought of Chris Pratt switching between his cheery and gruff voices is immediately funny.

The LEGO Movie 2 turns into a full-fledged musical, which is unsurprisingly brought up by one of the characters. Jon Lajoie’s songs do the job of being memorable and funny, with Mitchell bringing a colourful flair to the numbers. The appropriately titled “Catchy Song” does indeed get stuck in one’s head after viewing the movie, although the highlights come from a song making fun of Batman’s over-inflated ego and the end credits tune. The lyrics whiz by at such a speed, multiple viewings will definitely be required to catch the clever wordsmith. There are also more live-action portions in this film, which succeed at showing the sibling rivalry between Finn and his sister. While the lessons of the first LEGO Movie were pitched at an adult audience, the messages in the sequel are good ones for children and tweens to learn.

While the animators have done an impressive job of showing the shape-shifting skills of the alien LEGO queen who kidnaps our heroes, that subplot isn’t quite as funny or as compelling as it could have been. Despite the vocal talents of Tiffany Haddish, one starts to wonder what Emmet or Wyldstyle are up to. Benny the Spaceman and Unikitty, who were such scene stealers in the first movie, are surprisingly sidelined in The LEGO Movie 2. The third act also could have been cut down a bit as it tries to resolve the subplots and character arcs and we cut between Emmet, Wyldstyle, the other minifigs and the real people.

The LEGO Movie had such a brilliant novelty to it that succeeded beautifully and while The Second Part doesn’t hit the same level, it’s still a really funny and creative tale. Everyone working on these films clearly has an enormous amount of respect for the toys and knows what has made them appealing for so many decades. There are definitely plenty of laughs and the screenplay does include a few surprising plot twists that feel earned. They even manage to throw in surprise cameos that work on multiple levels. It’s uncertain at this point if there will be more LEGO movies, but the ones produced thus far have been nothing short of delightful.

Stefan Ellison

Stefan Ellison