"Paddington 2" is charming

"Paddington 2" is charming

Since nearly every movie has some kind of post-credits scene nowadays, it's reasonable to wonder whether the same can be said of Paddington 2.

This movie has many different sensations that change throughout the film.

Aunt Lucy is coming up on her 100th birthday, and Paddington wants to give her a taste of the London experience she always dreamed of. Paddington 2 has already earned very positive reviews in the United Kingdom, and it's one of those rare sequels that is actually better than its original, so it's well worth catching it in theaters. Brown (Hugh Bonneville), for one, believes that Phoenix is an upstanding citizen until his wife breaks into the actor's house and they discover stage disguises in his attic. The film's plot provides a series of amusing set pieces for Paddington to get into insane antics, as he injects a dose of propriety into the dank prison culture by teaching a crusty chef named Knuckles McGinty (Brendan Gleeson) to make marmalade sandwiches. The series of odd jobs that follows provides ample amounts of Rube Goldbergian slapstick comedy. Paddington may just be the most "human" of them all. It's up to the Browns and their beloved bear to catch the real thief and discover what mysteries lie in the book. However, his comic sensibilities, which always lean towards sarcasm (arguably, Grant's best performance is as the acidic lead in the 2002 dramedy About a Boy), fit in squarely with Paddington 2's sly tone.

His new family is made up of nice people: Father Henry Brown (Hugh Bonneville), mother Mary Brown (Sally Hawkins), his brother Jonathan Brown (Samuel Joslin), and Sister Judy Brown (Madeleine Harris). Even in a sequel, Bond's furry metaphor survives its animation intact.

Having won over the hearts and minds of the Brown family in his status somewhere between "foster son" and "family dog", Paddington is now a town fixture. The main culprit? Why, it's a hilariously hammy actor played by Hugh Grant.

Yes, one of the year's - possibly decade's, time will tell - cutest and cuddliest children's films sends its protagonist to prison for grand larceny. The movie's MVP is Brendan Gleeson, as the gruff yet soft-hearted prison chef with an all-timer name of Knuckles McGinty. Of all the actors, Hugh Grant steals the show.

Paddington-2

Now things are not all that good with Paddington as there are people that do not like him.

Paddington 2 has started our new movie year on a great note. Through some unfortunate situations, Paddington ends up in jail.

Obvious and subtly pointed metaphors for immigration aside, Paddington 2 also shows an exponential leap forward for King as a director. It was an act of kindness that Paddington himself would be proud of, and something that I'm sure made us all feel a little bit better about ourselves and the world.

To be fair, Grant makes for an enjoyably ridiculous villain in a part that comes with no small amount of self-deprecation. His motto, "If we're kind and polite, the world will be right", is the film's entirely honest moral. Leaning harder into the first film's obvious influences of Wes Anderson and Charlie Chaplin, Paddington 2 is a technical marvel, packed with so many blink-and-you'll-miss-them moments that one could watch it a dozen times and still not pick up on all of them. His eyes are especially "real" and express all his emotions beautifully.

But Paddington is a bear with a lot of determination and a positive attitude, and his new movie - now safely in the hands of Warner Bros., which handled producer David Heyman's "Harry Potter" films - turns out to be completely delightful.

It's that extra dose of creativity that elevates "Paddington 2" from the status of routine sequel to the kind of film parents will find worth packing up the kids for, even when the weather outside is still frightful.

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