Review: The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
Marcelo Pico and Rockie Juarez review the new animated sequel to The Lego Movie.
Marcelo: Never doubt Lord and Miller. I’d like to start with that. A 21 Jump Street movie wasn’t supposed to work, and they made it work. Another Spider-Man movie wasn’t supposed to be as revolutionary as Spider-Verse turned out to be, and yet they’re winning awards non-stop currently. A movie based on LEGOs was never meant to be anything more than a quick cash grab, yet 2014’s The Lego Movie was one of the most funny and heartfelt animated movies of the last decade. Now, with the sequel, The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, Phil Lord and Chris Miller hand the director reigns to Mike Mitchell, but stay on as screenwriters. The sequel takes place right after the first movie, then jumps ahead five years into a post-apocalyptic Mad Max: Fury Road-esque world. Out of the gate, any doubts they could replicate the magic of the first is gone. The Second Part is yet another Lord and Miller home run.
Rockie: I wholeheartedly agree with all of this. Director Mike Mitchell runs with the Lord and Miller formula and never blows up the lab. It honors the heart of the first film and still goes to new places. More of a sibling yarn this time around too so it is perfect, once again, for all members of the family. The film definitely leaned into a more “musical” route but all the songs were hilarious (especially the end credit song) so it never hurts the film. They nailed the lyrics and ear-worm-weaponry.
MP: I immediately went to listen to the soundtrack after watching the movie. “Everything is Awesome” was the standout song from the first movie, obviously, and The Second Part recognizes that and calls back to that song, while also making new catchy work. It was an unexpected, good surprise. What’s incredible, too, is how it doesn’t veer away from its main emotional core when it also is a comedy and then a musical and then a comedy again. It’s a story about a brother and sister trying to get along.
RJ: The first movie is very male and the sequel is totally a woman’s journey. Never showing the Dad, having the Mom (Goddess Maya Rudolph) do all the live action stuff with the kids and, of course, the sister doing her damndest to be included. It’s a wonderful companion piece to the original and still manages to do new things. I truly did miss Ghost Vitruvius though. They make good on past jokes without running them into the ground too, hard as shit to do when it is easy to just repeat things ad nauseum. Voice acting is terrific as well, with two strong ladies filling in new roles making things fresh and female heavy. Both Tiffany Haddish and Stephanie Beatriz deliver the goods in an already stacked roster. If they can continue this level if animation and heart, I’ll easily watch a third one.
MP: I love where this one goes, and I’m excited with where it can go in the future. It pays off that promise of a sister’s Lego toys colliding with the already-established, boy-friendly builds. It’s smart; it deals with toxic masculinity and gender-established roles, but it never forgets it’s a comedy, even while delivering that huge emotional punch in the end. Those wondering whether they should even bother with an animated movie sequel to a movie from five years ago should really reconsider their life choices and never doubt the creative forces of Lord and Miller.