Skip to main content

30th November 2011

Happy Feet Two Review

Five years on from the Academy Award winning original George Miller is back with the sequel, Happy Feet Two.

All singing and all dancing Mumble and the gang grace our screens once again – this time in 3D – with an all star voiceover cast. Elijah Wood, Robin Williams and Hugo Weaving are back with new additions P!nk as Gloria, previously voiced by the late Brittany Murphy, as well as newbies Matt Damon and Brad Pitt.

Moved on from his days of childhood insecurity Mumble (Wood) sees his son Erik (Ava Acres) faced with a similar identity crisis that even a penguin enthused rendition of SexyBack can’t solve. So off Eric waddles with his pals to Adélie-Land in search of some meaning in their penguin lives. Here they encounter the new bird in town, The Mighty Sven, who proved to be a huge annoyance through out. An inspirational penguin that escaped his death by learning to fly – Sven (Hank Azaria) is in fact a Swedish puffin impersonating a penguin, yes really.

This combined with a tenuous plot surrounding the entire Emperor Penguin population being trapped by a giant, shifted iceberg doesn’t leave you hanging off the edge of your seat in anticipation; but what this animated hit lacks in a solid storyline it makes up for in laughs.

Matt Damon and Brad Pitt as comedy krill duo, Will and Bill, continuously entertain on the sidelines as Will attempts to strike out on his own in the big, wide world and reject the conformity of life in a krill swarm. With best friend Bill reluctantly at his side they venture outside the comforts of the swarm and try their hands at turning the food chain on its head to become failed carnivorous crustaceans.

Religious overtones can be seen in Mighty Sven’s preaches of “if you want it, you must will it. If you will it, it will be yours” and there are distinct eco-friendly messages as icebergs collapse in every other scene; all polished off with a good old sing-song. However, this film disappointingly lacks as many toe-tapping remixed hits as the original. Granted the opening medley starts off well and the closing Under Pressure/ Rhythm Nation mix is a successful round-off, especially with P!nks’s lead vocals, but in between these two book end moments a lot of the original songs are second-rate.

Happy Feet 2 is admittedly not as good as the first and is unlikely to be winning as many big awards but regardless will undoubtedly be a festive favourite of the year. Take younger siblings, nieces, nephews, cousins or just go with friends. It’ll leave you feeling warm and fuzzy and will at least give you an excuse to get out of the house during Christmas chaos.

Lily Howes

Lily Howes

Former Lifestyle Editor at The Mancunion (2011-2012). English Literature and Drama graduate. Originally from Croydon, South London. If you don’t fancy being hounded to sign up for Blind Date then do avoid me at all costs (however if you are interested in taking part then e mail [email protected])

More Coverage

Passages review: Desire has never been so pleasureless

Passages studies sexuality and desire through a queer love triangle but forgets about the pleasure in Mubi’s latest release

Past Lives review: Celine Song delivers an outstanding debut

Celine Song’s debut film about past lovers and what could have been will mend and simultaneously break your heart

Chevalier (2022): A Noble pursuit that falls short of greatness

Chevalier, released in the UK in June 2023, strives to ascend to the heights of the greatest period dramas but falls short of that lofty ambition

Review: Disney 100 – The Concert

Disney 100: The Concert, hosted by Janette Manrara, is a touching tribute to an institution that has defined multiple generations