Dir: Thurop Van Orman
Starring: Jason Sudeikis, Josh Gad, Bill Hader, Rachel Bloom, Danny McBride, Leslie Jones, Awkwafina, Sterling K. Brown, Tiffany Haddish, and Peter Dinklage
“This summer, winter is coming.”
Not sure how many young ones are going to correspond this tagline for “The Angry Birds Movie 2” to the adult television show “Game of Thrones”. However, it’s fitting for an animated movie based on one of the biggest mobile games of all time, which was probably played by adults on their cell phones before the little kids discovered it, to aim for some crossover appeal to encourage a weekend family trip to the movies.
“The Angry Birds Movie” found success upon its release in 2016 with a mix of slapstick antics, bathroom humor, and an occasional winking joke tailored for mom and dad. The film had just enough fuel to maintain the enjoyment factor for 97 minutes while only slightly over-staying its welcome.
“The Angry Birds Movie 2” does just about the same, sticking to a similar story formula from the first film while surprisingly applying some much-needed work to the characters leading the charge. The film is working with themes surrounding some typical subjects like friendship, romance, and self-confidence but it also handles topics surrounding masculinity, arrogance, and the fear of failure throughout.
Red (voiced by Jason Sudeikis) is beloved, a hero to the extent of being a folktale in the eyes of the flightless birds who were saved from destruction on Bird Island. Red is tasked as security for the island, protecting the inhabitants from the airborne threats from the king of Piggy Island, Harold (voiced by Bill Hader). Unbeknownst to the two foes is another threat, a group of birds lead by an intelligent yet resentful eagle named Zeta (voiced by Leslie Jones) from the frozen Eagle Island who are looking for new property to inhabit.
Most animated sequels take the route of rehashing a similar, sometimes the same, plot from the original film. “The Angry Birds Movie 2” does exactly this, however it also doubles down on all the qualities that made the original film so much fun; with bathroom humor that will have the kids giggling and music cues with lively songs that will have parents remembering the old school jams, the film is trying to meet as many demographics as it can with its blend of comedy.
The narrative moves surprisingly fast, quickly establishing the primary characters and introducing new ones in effort to make things feel different. It helps in a few places, especially when the whip-smart Silver (Rachel Bloom) is on screen to put Red in his place, but the overall structure of the story doesn’t deviate enough to make it very memorable in the end. Still, the quick pace and emphasis on random humor moments makes the running time fly, which is a pleasant surprise.
“The Angry Birds Movie 2” doesn’t reinvent its story or try for much new direction for its second outing, however its focus seems positioned for simple laughs and entertainment both for parents and kids. In this regard it succeeds in being a fun sequel for a lazy Saturday matinee.
3.00 out of 5.00