Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2
Let me guess; right now you’re thinking about having a snack? Potato chips? Perhaps a fruit or candy bar? There’s something that you’re craving. Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs happens to be the best and worst movie to watch when your hungry. It also happened to be the ultimate “don’t judge a book by it’s cover” movie. The original children’s book of the same name was something that I loved to read back in elementary school. When I heard a movie was being made. I was intrigued. When the first trailer came out, I was enraged by to complete change they made. I ended up skipping out on this one.
But over time, I kept hearing good things about it and my friends kept telling me that “You gotta see Cloudy With a Chance with Meatballs”, so I went to the cheap theaters to catch a glimpse. I had been completely been wrong about this magical movie. Not only was the animation majestic (I want a photo of the cheeseburger storm hanging in my office), but the joke were funny, and the story of an inventor, his relationship with his dad, and trying to find his place among his town made this movie a very underrated classic. So I was very enthusiastic to see Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2.
The movie starts literally where the first left off with inventor Flint (played by Bill Hader) and weather intern Sam Sparks (played by Anna Faris) sealing a kiss from the food storm before. As they are standing on whats left of Swallow Falls, The Live Corp Company sends in several choppers where the Steve Jobs-like Chester V (played by Will Forte) promises to relocate the residents to San Franjose. During this, Flint accepts an offer to work with Chester V, where he’s later told he needs to go back to the island.
It becomes apparent that Flint had not destroyed the machine that made water into food, and has continued to evolve the island into a food-jungle. With the promise of becoming Chester V’s hero, Flint accepts and brings along Sam, his father Tim (played by James Caan), Officer Earl (played by Terry Crews), his new friend Brent (played by Andy Samberg) and Steve the monkey (played by Neil Patrick Harris). They all see that Swallow Falls is not only a jungle, but the machine had created living food animals from Cheeseburger-spiders to Watermelon-elephants to walking strawberries. So is shutting off the machine such a good idea?
The first Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs remains a great parody of disaster films. Here, this movie takes on monster movies like Jurassic Park and King Kong. This was a direction I would have not expected (though I didn’t think that the first needed a sequel). But I can tell the animators had fun designing the new island, creating pancake swamps and glowing Rock Candy Mountains. But they really put everything into the food animals. Walking bananas and swimming potatoes are something that parents can now expect their kids to imagine during new rounds of playtime.
Maybe they put a little too much focus on the design and creativity. A lot of jokes are still here and a good lesson remains about listening to your friends, but this movie is missing some of the heart that the first had. The father/son story was sweet, and this movie didn’t really try to fill the gap. To be fair, it would have been hard to do so. A lot of the best stuff here does come from the humor, which remains just as witty, and cleaver as the first (any movie that makes me laugh about a leak joke must be doing something right).
I’ll give this four Cheeseburger-Spiders out of five. While is doesn’t match the first, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 comes close enough to say that fans will be satisfied. Just be sure to have something to eat while your watching, otherwise you’ll be stealing your friends popcorn.