Movie Review: Open Road Films' #TheNutJob2

The Nut Job 2: Nutty By Nature
STARRING: Will Arnett, Katherine Heigl, Maya Rudolph, Jackie Chan, Isabela Moner and Bobby Cannavale
GENRE: Animated Comedy/All-Family
RATING: PG (Anticipated)
When the evil mayor of Oakton decides to tear down Liberty Park and build an amusement park in its place, Surly, Buddy, Andie and the rest of the animals are suddenly homeless! Surly tries to fight back, but realizes it’s not going to be easy.
The mayor has got an animal control squad patrolling the park… Precious has been dognapped by the mayor’s hyperactive daughter… And Surly has offended Mr. Feng, an adorable city mouse with deadly kung-fu skills.
Surly realizes that he has to put aside his differences with the animals and get everybody to work together in order to defeat the mayor, rescue Precious, and save Liberty Park… Before it’s too late.

The Nut Job 2 : Nutty By Nature...  because, I guess, The Nut Job did well financially, and, apparently, that is all it takes to proliferate bad animated movies. And because, as parents, we will take our children to see the only animated feature available at a movieplex, despite the quality. Don't take your children to see The Nut Job 2. Take them to see anything else. 

I didn't care for The Nut Job. The characters are unlikeable. The script lacked wit or humor. I was rooting against what were supposed to be the "lovable ragtag motley crew of park critters." Not even The A list cast of voice actors could redeem the first installment.  It was all bad. 

Take the first installment and add a villainous, too dark, too political Mayor (voiced by Bobby Moynihan) and, if it's possible, the second installment is even worse than the first. 

This new movie is very political for a family feature. The Mayor is portrayed as a money-grubbing, egotistical windbag. I appreciate when family features try to impart decent values on children. This Mayor, and all of his despicable behavior did not feel like a genuine effort to promote good values. It felt forced and overdone, serving to alienate the audience more than educating it. I hated the Mayor, and every scene he, or his cronies, were in. So, I tuned it out. And there was nothing likable enough to re-engage me into the story after the Mayor's scenes.

The only positive aspect of the entire feature was Mr. Feng (voiced by Jackie Chan.) Jackie Chan is, in all things, a professional. Chan has a genuinely likable personality and a voice which sounds good coming out of a tiny city mouse. Unfortunately, there wasn't enough of Mr. Feng to save the rest of the film. 

The characters are, once again, unlikable. The themes are too dark for families. Visually, it was unimpressive. The plot seemed convoluted and uninteresting. If Hollywood is going to cater to families, it should really cater to families and put-out better quality entertainment. 

If there is still some doubt, and you must go see The Nut Job 2 : Nutty By Nature for yourself, you can catch it when it opens everywhere this Friday.

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