Well, our next film is more or less the polar—that’s a pun, folks—opposite of IMMORTALS; no gory ancient Greek battles here—only cheery, singing, dancing penguins. It’s HAPPY FEET TWO, the very underwhelming sequel to the 2006 Academy Aware winner HAPPY FEET.
The original HAPPY FEET told a fairly straightforward story about an outsider trying to find his place in a community; this sequel ditches that simplicity in favor of a scattershot array of sub-plots. One of these is centered on a Swedish puffin—voiced by Hank Azaria—whom the penguins mistake for one of their own.
The best part of this movie is a sort of parallel story about two krill—voiced by Brad Pitt and Matt Damon—who decide to explore the mysterious world “outside the swarm.” The relationship between these two tiny crustaceans is more compelling—and funnier—than any of the generic misadventures of the penguin characters.
HAPPY FEET was a movie that was hard not to like; HAPPY FEET TWO is a movie that’s hard not to get a little bored by. The musical numbers range from moderately charming to extremely grating, and the plot feels like a medley of different movies—most of which aren’t very good. This isn’t bad per se, but it is very mediocre. I’m giving it a thumbs down.
My thumb is down, too. The movie is a total mess from a narrative perspective. It’s like 8 different movies going at once. I actually turned to the friend who was sitting next to me about halfway through. I said, “What’s this about?” Because I couldn’t figure it out. It’s like it’s a parable about global warming, right? It’s about finding your place in the world. It’s about being a little bit different um it’s also some really weird kind of Hurricane Katrina imagery going on where all the penguins…
Yeah…the penguins become trapped.
Their trapped in this bowl and they can’t get out, and they’re just like teeming and they’re panicking, and they can’t get any food, and they are all fearful that they are going to die. I’m like why is this a kids movie? This is really strange.
Well, what’s really surprising is that the director of this film, George Miller has actually pulled this off before. He’s pulled it off twice. He directed Babe: Pig In The City one of the best childrens films in the last fifteen years, which you know drastically expands on the scope of Babe. He also did it with his Mad Max movies as you know following up Road Warrior, also expanding very much in the sequel, but here you know he tries to expand upon Happy Feet, which is a fairly simple straightforward movie, and you’re right. The result is just a total mess. There’s too many subplots, too many characters. There’s not enough movie to go around.
The thing with the krill is cute, right, the Matt Damon and Brad Pitt…
Sure. It’s the best part movie.
They…you can imagine them getting into their third spin off you know Happy Feet 3: One In A Krillion or something like that.
Even, yeah, but even that isn’t enough to say support a feature. I mean the Damon, Pitt krill could be a short.
The little penguins are very cute and flufffy. That’s about it.