Movie Review: Happy Death Day 2U (2019)

A direct sequel to the 2017 horror-comedy Happy Death Day, and once again directed by Christopher Landon comes the sci-fi/comedy Happy Death Day 2U. Despite closing the time loop at the end of the original film, Tree Gelbman (Jessica Rothe) soon wakes up once more on the morning of her birthday and must figure out why she is re-re-living her day, with the help of Carter (Israel Broussard), Ryan (Phi Vu), Dre (Sarah Yarkin) and Samar (Suraj Sharma).

+ the vast majority of the cast from the first film return, including but not limited to those listed above, as well as Trees roommate Lori (Ruby Modine), and sorority queen bee Danielle (Rachel Matthews). The core cast – Tree, Carter and Danielle in particular – seem to be thoroughly enjoy playing slightly different versions of themselves than the previous film as the timeline loops
+ that stupid baby mask is still scary, and even gets a call out in the movie for being so freaky looking. Even in the lighter moments of comedy, and even when the entire crowd at a basketball game, for example are wearing replicas, it is still unsettling. There is even that sinister, IT-style laughing/violin/whatever noise when it appears
+ overall, this movie is far less horror-oriented, and far more sci-fi/comedy, featuring some horror elements (ie that terrifying mask). Don’t go into this one expecting the same slasher film elements from the original

happydeathday2u_2

– an early change in the formula, complete with an interesting little twist, are soon ignored in favour of a repeat of the first film. I don’t necessarily think it should have stayed on the first tease, but I would have liked some closure as to what it was suggesting (it’s hard to talk about without giving away the early twist)
– both of my complaints from the original film are redone here, in different ways. Once again, we know the injuries Tree sustains will catch up with her, but that is again dropped seemingly just as it should be at its worst; and the explanation for the looping – unexplained in the original – is given an explanation here, but it somewhat ruins the tension from the first film
– overall, the film feels a little bit pointless. Tree had her full character development in the first movie, and fun as it is to see more characters, and/or different iterations of the characters from the previous film, I don’t think it added too much to Tree’s story

> If the first film was Groundhog Day, this one is more like Back to the Future 2, once again as pointed out in the movie

Should you see this film: Whilst I can’t say that I enjoyed this more than the first film, it fills in some blanks and provides enough comedy to keep things fresh, with a few twists and turns along the way. If you liked the first one, this one will be well suited to you as well.

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