Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs 2
A cluttered and jumbled follow-up to the surprise 2009 animated hit
The fast food franchise for children continues with a sequel to 2009’s surprise animated hit. Judi and Ron Barrett’s 1978 book was focused primarily on the small town of Swallow Falls, but the expanded universe of nefarious inventors and corporate intrigue created for the first film leaves plenty of loose ends for the sequel to pick up.
After the food storm featured in Cloudy, the town has been evacuated, and The Live Corp Company has been given the responsibility for sorting out the mess. The task unites Flint Lockwood (Bill Hader) with his hero, Live Corps’ CEO, scientist Chester V (Will Forte), whose motives go beyond simply cleaning up. Together with Sam (Anna Faris), Flint's dad (James Caan), pal Manny (Benjamin Bratt) and the officious Officer Earl (Terry Crews replacing the presumably busy Mr T) Flint returns to find that his Diatonic Super Mutating Dynamic Food Replicator is merging food with animals. The result is ‘foodimals’ in the form of tacodiles and watermelephants, which Flint discovers rampaging around the island.
Such childish wordplay sets the tone for deliberately juvenile antics of this busy but unappealing rehash. Replacing the original’s directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller, Cody Cameron and Kris Pearn stick rigidly to the colourful, cartoonish tone that made the first film so popular, but Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs 2’s problem is that, as with its unwieldy title, the narrative of the film is cluttered and jumbled. There’s a message in there about the dangers of genetically modified food, and about staying loyal to your friends, yet the impact is muffled by a contrived storyline. Audiences who appreciated the first film will enjoy the silliness, but uninitiated viewers may find a second serving of Meatballs is hard to swallow.
General release from Fri 25 Oct.