The population of Bricksburg have to deal with alien invaders in The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part. Five years after Taco Tuesday, repeated attacks by Duplo invaders have turned Bricksburg into “Apocalypseburg.” Despite the town now being a desolate dystopia, Emmet Brickowski (Chris Pratt) remains forever optimistic and even builds a house for himself and Wyldstyle, aka Lucy (Elizabeth Banks). However, Emmet’s house attracts the attention of General Sweet Mayhem (Stephanie Beatriz), who kidnaps Lucy, Batman (Will Arnett), Unikitty (Alison Brie), MetalBeard (Nick Offerman), and Benny (Charlie Day) and takes them to Duplo leader Queen Watevra Wa’Nabi (Tiffany Haddish). Fearing that this is the start of the “Our-Mom-Ageddon,” Emmet decides to travel to the Systar and save his friend, with his receiving help from the gruff adventurer Rex Dangervest (Pratt).
Under the direction of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, 2014’s The LEGO Movie a surprisingly great film version of the popular building blocks. The film was so successful that it lead to two spin-off films with 2017’s The LEGO Batman Movie and The LEGO Ninjago Movie. For the The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part, Lord and Miller return to write and produce the film, with Mike Mitchell (Shrek Forever After) stepping into the director’s chair. The story of the film essentially picks up right after the end of The LEGO Movie, where Duplo blocks from the Systar system begin repeated attacks of Bricksburg, turning the town into a post-apocalyptic wasteland. While most of the population has become hardened and brooding characters, Emmet Brickowski remains his old upbeat self, with Lucy telling him that he should grow with the times. When he is faced with the task of saving his kidnapped friends, Emmet must learn to harden himself, with the help of “Master Breaker” Rex Dangervest.
Probably one of the elements that helped The LEGO Movie stand apart from other animated films was the utilization of live action footage to show how the story of the film is the depiction of the imagination of a boy playing with LEGO blocks. The LEGO Movie 2 doubles down on this aspect of the story, with there being many flashes to the live action world outside of Bricksburg. This time around however, it just seems to be a part of the story and is not as pleasantly surprising as it was the first time around.
Even though The LEGO Movie 2 does suffer a bit from sequelitis, it is still a quite entertaining film to watch. Following the Oscar-nominated success of the song “Everything is Awesome” from the first film, The LEGO Movie 2 features a number of musical sequences, with titles such as “Catchy Song” and “Super Cool.” Then of course there is the usual barrage of pop cultural references and celebrity cameos. Even the character of Rex Dangervest is an amalgamation of all the characters from popular films Chris Pratt has starred in since the release of The LEGO Movie.
While The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part is definitely a lesser film than the original, it is still something I highly recommend checking out.