After the giddying laughs of Phil Lord and Chris Miller’s Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs two years ago, the sequel is a bit of a comedown as you expect from any Hollywood animation movie. That is only obvious considering Lord and Miller did not direct this film. And yet as a harmless entertainer for kids, the movie is decently goofy and fun enough to give it a chance.
The best way to describe Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs 2 is ‘Food Puns – The Movie’. Like in the original film there are a lot of food monsters in the sequel, and there is a ridiculous amount of wordplay involved with naming said monsters. There’s Hippotatoes, Tacodiles, Flamangoes, Wild Pickles and so many more Foodimals — food animals for beginners — here it’s hard to keep track. And they’re all cute as hell, so there’s no room for boredom at any point in the film. The movie also carries the gorgeous palette of the original film and takes it up a couple of notches for absolutely hunger inducing eye popping animation, best experienced in 2D.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 doesn’t exactly follow the book Revenge of the Leftovers, but it’s standardized by Hollywood to cater to its demographic. The first movie was more irreverent and contained comedic material that could be appreciated by (young) adults but this film is only for the kiddies, and without the tremendous production values it would seem like a predictable direct to DVD title. Rather than the knowingly geeky wit, genre lampooning and self-parody from the first movie, this installment is simply silly and readymade for easy consumption.
All of the characters we saw and adored in the original Cloudy are back, including Flint Lockwood and the Reverse Mr T. I recommend you don’t bother seeing any trailers or reading the synopsis of the movie before walking into the theatre, because there’s precious little in the script to be intrigued by. All you need to know is that the machine from the first movie caused some unforeseen cataclysmic circumstances and our heroes are sent off on a quest to fix things and save the world (again). There are a couple of sequences that are so colourfully fun and frenetic they feel like a sugar rush, and kids will be thoroughly entertained. If you’ve got any at home, do take them to the theatre, if not do check it out on DVD when it arrives.