Movie Reviews: Happy Death Day 2U




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     Universal (1 hr. 40 min)
     A sequel to Happy Death Day
     Jessica Rothe, Israel Broussard, Ruby Modine, Phi Vu, Suraj Sharma
Bottom Line:

Jon Rutledge

Sequels can be dangerous waters. You’re gambling any magic and admiration you gathered in the first film on the idea that you can hopefully keep the same experience or better it for the viewer. The first film was a great blend of horror and comedy, a tasty morsel that was a one-and-done fun experience.

This second film feels like they went out of their way to try and explain what happened in the first one. We don’t need an explanation. We had a magic/science/divine intervention that made this girl live over and over until she solves her murder. STOP! We don’t need an explanation. Fans will talk for hours and perhaps years on what caused the loop event. 

This film has Tree (Jessica Rothe) in a new dimension she has to deal with, Carter (Israel Broussard) in a relationship with someone else and Tree’s mother still alive. There are some very complex emotions and choices that Tree has to make, but it’s not enough to carry an entire film. 

They seem to ignore some of the rules they set in the first film. First and foremost, every time Tree reincarnates she takes damage, and each loop is slowly killing her. They continue to abuse her, however this time it’s not a murderer killing her, she is killing herself so she can reset the day, This gives us a montage of her dying in new and exciting ways, sort of, but it's the same thing again and again. 

Having the entire cast back for the sequel is good for continuity, but perhaps they could have expanded the plot to a different person reliving their life over and over and give Tree a break. She could then offer help because of her many experiences. 

I loved this just as much as when I saw it on an episode of Stargate. There, the character has to endure repeat after repeat after repeat and learn the solution slowly over time, albeit they did have some fun along the way. While there are some differences, I couldn't separate the two in my head.

If they want to make another loop film they need to come up with a more exciting story and stop abusing Tree. She has served her purpose admirably but indeed just give the poor girl a rest. Danielle (Rachel Matthews) as a test subject is not interesting because she is not a good person at heart. Maybe she can grow as a character, but for now, she is just not interesting. 

In the end, this feels like a film that was made because everyone on the first one had such a great time they decided they should make another, and now we have a placeholder for a third one. I liked the first one, but this one was a disappointment.  It is moving further away from what made the first one fun. My advice is don’t do something because it worked the first time, Do something better, and better, and better…

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