When the Subplot is More Engaging than the Main: Angry Birds 2

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The world is all divided into three parts. On the first, there is the island of the flightless birds, who get around in the air through the use of giant slingshots. On the other island live the green pigs, with whom the birds are at constant prank war. Chief among the warrior birds is Red (JASON SUDEIKIS), who is revered because he protected the island from the pigs and their leader, Leonard (BILL HADER) with the help of his friends Chuck (JOSH GAD) and Bomb (DANNY McBRIDE).

But there is a third island, an island of ice, newly discovered and declaring war upon the lands of both pig and bird, launching giant iceballs through the air and reigning down not pranks but destruction. Having a common enemy, birds and pigs forge a truce to work together and stop the mad plans of Zeta (LESLIE JONES) who seeks revenge against the one who jilted her years ago -- Mighty Eagle (PETER DINKLAGE).

But Red is fearful of working with the advice of others. His life prior to saving Bird Island was one of rejection, and if someone else other than him comes out of this new battle as the hero, he may lose the adulation of the crowd and be shunned and forgotten once more. But when the only chance for success comes from Chuck's sister, Silver (RACHEL BLOOM), Red must learn to act selflessly, or risk losing everything.

That's the plot. The rest of gross-out jokes, mild innuendo, and -- most welcome -- a continuing set of interludes with the hatchlings (the baby birds), as they embark on a quest to save their baby sisters, the unhatched eggs they are playing with while their father sits by clueless. Of course, their adventure will intersect with the main story at the right time, allowing the hatchlings the pivotal role in saving the day.

While there were bits of humor in this animated special, the memorable ones come from the scenes with the hatchlings. If you liked the first movie, you'll likely enjoy the second, although it's centered on the themes of broken relationships and abandoned children (and I don't mean the hatchlings or the eggs).

Grade: 
3.0 / 5.0