Nobody could have predicted it. The Lego Movie, released way back in 2014, wasn’t the hollow marketing exercise most expected. Instead, full of social satire, sharply subversive humour and a cast list comprised of talent from this decade’s most acclaimed sitcoms, it made a surprise commercial and critical blockbuster… while still selling a brick-tonne of toys. Alright, we’ll stop with the puns before it’s too late.
Five years later and the long-awaited sequel has finally hit our screens. Is it as awesome as the first time around? Well…
The film picks up instantly from the last film, when the Lego world was invaded by Duplo aliens, and then flashes forward five years. Set in a knowingly grittier landscape strongly influenced by Mad Max: Fury Road, the gang are now living in ‘Apocalypseburg’ where everyone is gloomy except for our ever-optimistic hero Emmet (Chris Pratt). Life soon takes a turn for the worse as the original team is kidnapped and taken to the Systar System. You see, Queen Watevra Wa’Nabi plans on marrying the leader of Apocalypseburg. Of course, the only person who can save them is Emmet… but is all what it seems?
Unfortunately, if you’ve seen the original Lego Movie, it’s probably exactly how you predict. There’re a few changes including particularly enjoyable parody of Pratt’s acting career in new character Rex Dangervest (he’s a raptor training archaeologist cowboy galaxy defender… now that he’s lost the baby fat). There’re also more tunes but ultimately for The Lego Movie 2, the song remains the same. Enjoyable while playing but ultimately inconsequential. The jokes are there, the bright and busy world design is there, everything that did well the first time, but the story also follows the exact same beats. So much so you’ll swear you’ve just seen the same movie twice.
Maybe it’s a case of high expectations but now that the surprise is gone, The Lego Movie 2 brings too few new toys to the table. It’s a shame when the original is still so fun to play with.