Sequels are interesting. Do it for a "regular" movie, and the result ranges from so-so to disaster. Animated features -- other than The Smurfs or Monsters University (sorry) -- have a much better track record. Who didn't love Shrek 2? Or three? Or four? Or the Toy Story sequels?
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 picks up the story of Flint Lockwood, Sam Sparks and their island friends after Flint's machine begins to turn fruits and vegetables into live creatures: flamangos, shrimpanzees, subwhales, etc. Flint's scientist idol Chester V. is chosen by the government to clean up the island. But Chester has other -- evil -- plans.
The temptation is to pack this review with foodlike puns. Tempting but not necessary. Five writers and two first-time major feature directors, Cody Cameron and Kris Pearn, have produced one of the most clever, and funniest, animated sequels ever. Their liberal wordplay beats anything I could do and will have those loving good puns, bad puns and word twisting howling.
Kids won't catch the fun, but there is plenty of slapstick and action to rivet them to their seats.
Directors: Cody Cameron, Kris Pearn
Stars: Bill Hader, Anna Faris, James Caan, Will Forte, Andy Samberg, Benjmin Bratt, Neil Patrick Harris, Terry Crews, Al Roker
Mr. Movie rating: 5 stars
Rated PG for some mature themes. It's playing at the Carmike 12, the Fairchild Cinemas 12 and at Walla Walla Grand Cinemas.
5 stars to 4 1/2 stars: Must see on the big screen
4 stars to 3 1/2 stars: Good film, see it if it's your type of movie.
3 stars to 2 1/2 stars: Wait until it comes out on DVD.
2 stars to 1 star: Don't bother.
0 stars: Speaks for itself.