The long-awaited sequel to the 2014 hit The Lego Movie has finally arrived, but The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part follows the original’s formula too closely to be a meaningful update. With a similar story structure, the new twists aren’t nearly as impactful as the first film’s and are predictable. However, the fantastic animation and comedy bring the entertainment value. You will still find yourself laughing constantly, which is the biggest success of the film. The Lego Movie 2 is another good family film in the Lego franchise.

The Lego Movie 2 starts where the first one ended before moving the action ahead five years to catch up to present day. Construction worker Emmet (Chris Pratt), Lucy (Elizabeth Banks), and friends have been trying to survive the constant invasions by Lego Duplo-built creatures for the past few years. A new adventure begins when the mysterious General Mayhem (Stephanie Beatriz) arrives and kidnaps Lucy, Batman (Will Arnett), Unikitty (Alison Brie), Benny (Charlie Day), and MetalBeard (Nick Offerman), leaving Emmet alone to save the day. On his way to save his friends from the possible evil Queen Watevra Wa’Nabi (Tiffany Haddish), pronounced as “Whatever I Wanna Be,” Emmet teams up with space hero Rex Dangervest, who is also voiced by Pratt and is a compilation of the various characters Pratt has previously portrayed.

The main plot is much weaker and simpler than The Lego Movie and relies mainly on the voices of Pratt, Banks, Arnett, and Haddish to keep things moving. Almost all of the original voice actors returned for the sequel, but they all have smaller background roles with the exceptions of Pratt, Banks, and Arnett. Instead of having a more ensemble feel, The Lego Movie 2 heavily features a few main characters doused with cameos from others, including the scene-stealing Superman (Channing Tatum) and Green Lantern (Jonah Hill). All of the voice performances are memorable, with Arnett being the standout once again. His take on Batman is absolute perfection.

The film also features quite a few unnecessary songs that seem to be included as a means of trying to duplicate the success of “Everything is Awesome” from the original. None of the songs are as catchy this time around, but the lyrics are brilliant. Rather than paying attention to the colorful randomness on the screen during the oddly placed musical numbers, listen to what the characters are saying because there are plenty of great jokes mixed into each song. Some of the best comedy actually occurs within the songs, so, as annoying as they are, they wind up working well.

There are two obvious strengths of The Lego Movie 2: humor and animation. Writers Phil Lord and Christopher Miller have proven yet again that they are comedic geniuses with their witty script. The way that they infuse puns and meta jokes into the film with perfect timing is fantastic. It is also great that Lord and Miller were allowed to use tons of jokes to make fun of other Warner Bros. properties, as some studios aren’t keen on creating comedy about their own films. As in all of the other Lego films, the entire animation team deserves a round of applause for bringing Legos to life. The amount of detail in this film is incredible, especially when it is all Lego-based. As someone who still enjoys playing with Legos, I find this film really fun to watch. I really liked how much emotion the animators create on the faces of each character with the limitations of the real bricks having printed faces.

The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part is great fun for the whole family to enjoy. There’s plenty of humor for adults, and the story is told in a way that kids will easily understand. The message behind the film is sweet and makes perfect sense given the original, even if it is predictable. Even if it isn’t a masterpiece in the plot department, The Lego Movie 2 is still fun to watch and has enough comedy to keep you interested.

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