Three sequels hit the big screen; only one of them is truly worth the wait.
THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE
Riding along its already-blockbuster status, the franchise of LEGO films continues with this first “sequel” after the original The LEGO Movie. The voice cast is full of greats, including Will Arnett, Zach Galifianakis, Michael Cera, Rosario Dawson, and even Mariah Carey!
LEGO Batman already played a hilarious supporting role in the first film, which only adds to the fun of this wittier and better-looking film. The crux of the plot revolves around Batman (Arnett) learning to work with others and lose his self-loving shtick. That task is harder than it seems.
The jokes fly quickly, leaving both kids and adults laughing. The animation is supreme, with the blockiness of the characters seamlessly snapping together with the wonderfully created LEGO world. While it does ride the coattails of the original a bit, in terms of pace and style, The LEGO Batman Movie still stands alone as a complete package, full of laughs and a lot of fun. With plenty of pop culture references to make you relish in nostalgia and present-day wackiness, the only downfall will be seeing how this film stands the test of time.
FIFTY SHADES DARKER
Also following after its blockbuster original, Fifty Shades Darker picks up the next part of Anastasia and Christian’s tumultuous love affair. While the first film was flimsy fun, with a surprising stylish flair, this second piece of the franchise feels like bad leftovers.
Girls’ Nights Out may still enjoy the cattiness and giggly sexiness of the plot, but no true film fan will feel like relishing here is worth it. The story is silly. The performances are embarrassing. The abundance of intimate scenes gets pretty tiring. Even a sultry music cue from Taylor Swift can’t save this piece of Valentine’s Day fodder.
JOHN WICK: CHAPTER 2
The surprise success of the first John Wick film immediately sparked fan requests for a sequel. And, boy, is this a sequel worth waiting for!
Keanu Reeves returns as the titular hitman, ready and willing to return to the hunt. Chapter 2 boasts a stellar supporting cast, including John Leguizamo, Ian McShane, and Bridget Moynohan.
The action sequences, while there are plenty, are completely captivating and exciting. Arguably, the franchise isn’t for everyone, with action flick fans being the main draw. But, those looking for a action-fueled escape to the cinema will find more than they’re expecting with Chapter 2.
The hottest awards contenders are still playing Regal Atlantic Station, with Best Picture nominees La La Land, Moonlight, Hidden Figures, Fences, and Manchester by the Sea hitting the big screen. Think you know what will eventually win the gold? Make your predictions here for a chance to WIN free movie tickets!
See It: John Wick: Chapter 2
Skip It: Fifty Shades Darker
Scottie Knollin is a member of the Georgia Film Critics Association. Find his reviews and review roundups here each week and in more depth at AllTheHitsSoFar.com!