A few missing pieces but still as funny, visually stunning, and warm-hearted as the original
The original “Lego Movie” from 2014 was one of the best animated movies I’ve seen this decade. It opened our minds with its illusion on what Lego figures look like and feel like. The animation was beyond dazzling in that concept, and its heart and humor were in the right places.
The sequel, “The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part,” has a few missing pieces, but still offers the value, heart, and humor of the original.
The story takes place following the events of Taco Tuesday, and a little girl’s (Brooklynn Prince from “The Florida Project”) Duplo blocks attack Bricksburg, and turns it into a “Mad Max” world called “Apocalypseburg.” The only figure to stay positive is Emmet (voiced by Chris Pratt), who is often told by Lucy (voiced by Elizabeth Banks) to stop pretending “Everything is Awesome.” In fact, almost everyone tells him to grow up. I guess some would say: “This is a Trump Era thing.”
Then a solider named General Mayhem (voiced by Stephanie Beatriz, Rosa Diaz from TV’s “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”) kidnaps Lucy, Batman (voiced by Will Arnett), UniKitty (voiced by Alison Brie), Benny (voiced by Charlie Day), and MetalBeard (voiced by Nick Offerman), and takes them far beyond the galaxy to her Queen-the shapeshifting Queen Watevra Wa’Nabi (voiced by Tiffany Haddish). She plans to marry Batman before a universal event takes place.
Meanwhile, Emmet travels through space and meets Rex Dangervest (also voiced by Pratt), a splice of Pratt’s iconic characters (Peter Quill from “Guardians of the Galaxy,” Owen Grady from “Jurassic World,” and Josh Faraday from “The Magnificent Seven”), who trains him to be tough on his rescue mission.
The missing pieces I’m referring to consist of a few predictable elements (I won’t give anything way), Will Ferrell only having a tiny role as both President Business and the live-action dad, and Liam Neeson and Morgan Freeman having no speaking lines at all.
Aside from these things, “The Second Part” is almost as delightful as the original in the ways it convinces us about the Lego world, and how it has its heart in the right place with the characters and their feelings.
You still have some fun voice work from Pratt, Banks, Arnett, Brie, Day, and Offerman; but Haddish is the perfect new addition as the voice of Waterva Wa’Nabi. I love the ways her character moves with her Lego bricks changing, and how she improvises with the character. And Beatriz is charming when uses her normal voice, spliced with alien voice effects, and a cute Kristen Bell-type voice. The voice work is just fun. Even Bruce Willis has a funny cameo.
The movie was still produced by the two geniuses, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller; and the director, this time, is Mike Mitchell, who has done a much better job making this than the overrated “Trolls.” When its comes to the animation and inspiration, these people almost have all the pieces. This sequel keeps on building.
Opens Everywhere February 8.