If The Lego Movie proved it was possible to see the good in an otherwise uniform society, then The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part proves it’s okay if everything isn’t always awesome. Sure, this second installment has a lot of the same comedy beats, but it does well in maturing its thematic elements to a point where it feels organic enough to be believable.
Five years have past since Emmett (Chris Pratt) became the ultimate every man before Finn’s sister Bianca was allowed to play with the family’s large Lego set. The town is now Apocalypseburg, with heavy Mad Max Fury Road vibes. Mysterious alien invaders descend on Apocalypseburg and Emmett’s newly designed home for him and Lucy (Elizabeth Banks), a shiny example of Emmett’s refusal to get with the times and become “broody,” like everyone else in Apocalypseburg. The first few moments of the film take place immediately after the events of the first one. The Justice League sans Batman (Will Arnett), who’s off on “his own solo adventure,” leave to take care of the aliens, but they never come back. When Captain Mayhem (Stephanie Beatriz) kidnaps Lucy, Batman, Unikitty, MetalBeard, and Benny, and takes them to the Sis-Star System, Emmett ignores the voices of those telling him he isn’t tough, including Lucy, and sets out to save his friends.
This film is very much about growing up, especially with the human kids being five years older than we last saw them along with accepting the fact that sometimes, it’s okay to not be okay. It may seem like Lucy and the rest of Apocalypseburg are aware of this, but the way they lean too hard on being “broody” is an example of accepting one’s situation without really trying all that hard to change it. Emmett, on the other hand, leans too far in the other direction. His steadfast determination to act like everything is still awesome by literally singing that song all the time, is an example of the lies we sometimes tell ourselves to avoid the changes in our lives.
Lucy thinks Emmett should become more tough and to harden his heart, but this only makes things worse. The film drives the whole “you need to change” aspect a little too hard, almost to the point where you can see the revelation of “actually, no you don’t need to,” a mile away. But there’s still some cool twists and turns in the film. Since The Lego Movie showed their hand the first time around with the real world seeping into the story, it’s good this second installment refused to play cloy, cutting in scenes of the real world pretty regularly throughout. There even seems to be some level of self-awareness from the Lego characters that they exist in the imagination of children, but it’s more of an in-joke than anything else.
The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part is a pretty decent follow up to what was a fantastic original idea five years before, with really great new songs that you will definitely not get stuck in your head.