The citizens of Bricksburg face a dangerous new threat when LEGO DUPLO invaders from outer space start to wreck everything in their path. The battle to defeat the enemy and restore harmony to the LEGO universe takes Emmet, Lucy, Batman and the rest of their friends to faraway, unexplored worlds that test their courage and creativity.
The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part Review
by Ashley Hobley
Nobody was expecting great things from The Lego Movie when it was greenlit back in 2011 but when it was released in 2014, it shocked the world with its smarts, humour, heart and beautiful animation. Five years later and we now have a sequel that is just as clever, funny, stunning to look at and emotional but it is missing the surprise and the freshness of the original which isn’t helped by being the fourth film in the Lego Movie franchise (following 2017’s The Lego Batman Movie and The Lego Ninjago Movie).
After briefly picking up right where the last movie ended, with the arrival of Duplo monsters in Bricksburg, we jump to five years later and Bricksburg has been replaced after several Duplo attacks with a post-apocalyptic wasteland named Apocalypseburg. All the residents are now hardened by the constant attacks and fighting, except Emmet (Chris Pratt) who is just as naive and upbeat as he was in the original, although he is troubled by a dream he had of a pending "Our-Mom-Ageddon".
Emmet’s dream soon appears to be a vision of the future as the leader of the Duplo army (Stephanie Beatriz) captures Lucy (Elizabeth Banks), Batman (Will Arnett), Benny (Charlie Day), Metalbeard (Nick Offerman), and Unikitty (Alison Brie) and takes them back to the Systar System to appear before Queen Watevra Wa'Nabi (Tiffany Haddish), a shape shifting collection of blocks set on marrying Batman. Emmet sets out to rescue them but comes into trouble when his spaceship enters an asteroid field. Enter Rex Dangervest (Chris Pratt), a galaxy-defending archaeologist, cowboy, raptor trainer and “Master Breaker”, to the rescue with his fist shaped spaceship and crew of raptors.
The story starts off a bit slow but really picks up when they head to the Systar System, and the third act takes it up to another level and ties everything together very nicely. While the first movie was about a son trying to play with his father, this sequel is about a little sister wanting to play with her brother, and when I reflected on the film through that lens I found a greater appreciation it. It makes more sense why there are a few musical numbers when there were none, outside of “Everything is Awesome”, in the original and why the Systar System is a mashup of not only Duplo, Mini-Doll and regular Lego pieces but various arts and crafts materials.
Animation wise, it is at the level we have now come to expect of these films, but that means some of the magic from the original is lost and some of the little details that wowed me in the original didn’t catch my eye or illicit the same reaction. All the Lego creations look incredible and I look forward to putting them together when the inevitable Lego sets are released, especially Rex’s Spaceship.
The voice cast does a great job across the board but I must give special praise to Chris Pratt for his dual roles in the film that are almost polar opposites. Elizabeth Banks is great as well as Lucy struggles with Emmet not growing up and then seeming to be the only one suspicious of Systar System and their attempts to coerce the original crew to accept them. The interactions between Arnett’s Batman and Haddish’s Queen Watevra Wa'Nabi are a highlight of the film as the Queen tries to court him before manipulating him in the song “Gotham City Guys” in which she implies she is more interested in Superman. There are also a couple of fun pop culture figures that pop up in the film, although not to the same level as the original.
While it isn’t quite as good as the original, this film is a worthy successor and is definitely awesome. With its subtle storytelling, fun characters, catchy songs and a number of memorable moments, it is sure to be one of the best animated films of the year.
Director: Mike Mitchell
Writers: Phil Lord (Screenplay & Story by),Christopher Miller (Screenplay & Story by), Matthew Fogel (Story by)
Cast: Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett, Tiffany Haddish, Stephanie Beatriz, Charlie Day, Alison Brie, Nick Offerman, Maya Rudolph
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