To make a quality sequel to a beloved film is a challenge. Looking at all of the film sequels Hollywood has pumped out, I can count the amount I’ve enjoyed on one hand. However, seeing as “The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part” was written by Christopher Miller and Phil Lord (“Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs,” “The Lego Movie,” “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse”), I still had high hopes, and I certainly was not disappointed.
The film kicks into gear immediately, picking up on the exact scene the first film left off, and begins a new story. This is where one of my few issues lies, in that the new plot is very forced in its introduction. It quickly smoothed out soon after the exposition though, and then gets into the real meat of the film.
The entirety of the movie is encompassed in a sort of meta-humor, intertwining real-world references with self-deprecating dialogue. The comedy within the film isn’t really found in jokes with punchlines, but rather the situations that writers Lord and Miller create are hilarious on their own with how each character responds to them. Aside from when the film was focused on being dramatic, there essentially was not a moment that I was not laughing.
Speaking of the characters, I can’t compliment the cast enough. It was mostly the side characters that had the more elaborate performances. Alison Brie performs remarkably as the emotionally back-and-forth Unikitty, who is happy and innocent one second then loud and angry the next. Charlie Day also deserves praise for his performance as the ever-excited Benny.
From this I must also address my second major criticism of “The Lego Movie 2,” which is Chris Pratt. I usually love Chris Pratt— I mean it is Chris Pratt, how can you not—he voices two of the film’s most major characters, Emmet and Rex, and struggles to make two distinct voices. With a large portion of the film being just Emmet and Rex interacting, it becomes quite annoying hearing Pratt essentially talk to himself.
Visually, the movie is, surprisingly, a spectacle. For something purposefully animated to look like stop-motion, everything is surprisingly smooth, especially the action scenes. The lighting in each scene is exaggerated to appear as if it was lit from house lights, in order to achieve the illusion of the film as entirely created from children playing with their legos. The effect works well with the amplified coloring of each setting.
With all of these elements put together, as long as the film matches your sense of humor, it should be something very enjoyable for any audience, young or old. For a sequel, “The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part” exceeds expectations and is just as great as the first movie. Actually, it pretty much matches expectations, as Lord and Miller only produce greatness.