Sing 2, an Illumination Studios film directed and written by Garth Jennings, follows Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey), who is finding major success with his new theater. Unfortunately, he fails to impress Suki (Chelsea Peretti), a talent scout, and has to deal with the reality that he might not reach further success. Not willing to let his dream die, he reunites the performers from his theater and sneaks into an audition being held by major entertainment mogul Jimmy Crystal (Bobby Cannavale).
Things don’t turn out in Buster’s favor as they’re immediately turned away by Mr. Crystal within seconds of their audition. However, Gunter (Nick Kroll) pitches an idea to Mr. Crystal that includes a performance by Clay Calloway (Bono), a famous musician that has not been seen in over 15 years. Mr. Crystal agrees to the idea but is unaware that no one in Buster’s group knows Calloway. Buster and the group must now keep their promise and find a way to get Calloway to join their group. The group also has to deal with the various dilemmas that come from the world of showbiz.
One of the major themes that Sing 2 emphasizes is chasing one’s dreams and never giving up. While this isn’t necessarily a new theme, Sing 2 offers an interesting take on how the main characters deal with the theme. It’s clear how much Buster wants his friends to succeed and be recognized for the incredible talent they have. He’s willing to risk everything for them to be noticed for the amazing performers he knows they are. His behavior never comes off as desperate or as a desire for validation that would only benefit him in any way. It shows how much of a caring friend he is to his cast.
Certain main performers undergo major character development throughout Sing 2. Rosita (Reese Witherspoon) begins to doubt her abilities as a performer and lets certain fears take over. Dealing with these fears that come from the world of showbiz makes her character much more than what her character was in the first film. Gunter’s creativity is always judged and ridiculed for being too outlandish. However, he’s able to show the incredible impact that his grand ideas can have on the performance. However, it would have been great to see more of the cast get character development, especially Johnny (Taron Egerton) and Meena (Tori Kelly). Their arcs in the film are rather bland and they don’t get as much time to flesh out their struggles of adapting to a new world of entertainment until the final moments of the film.
The strongest element of Sing 2 is the connection that Ash (Scarlett Johansson) and Calloway make. After endless attempts from members of Buster’s group fails, Ash is the one who manages to make a connection with Calloway. His decision to step away from fame and become a recluse is valid, especially with the trauma that comes from it. What makes this connection unique is the fact that Ash doesn’t talk to him only for the sake of getting him to join the group. Getting him to join is her motive at first but quickly changes into making sure that he hasn’t completely given up on life. Having left a relationship where she was made to feel less than who she is, Ash aims to help Calloway see life past the trauma that he’s experienced. “This Song Saved My Life,” the song they sing together, manages to perfectly capture the connection that the two have made by the end of the film.
Unfortunately, Sing 2 suffers from delivering a predictable story. There are moments where it seems as if something different might happen, especially with Buster and his cast’s attempt to recruit Calloway. However, every attempt fails and it comes to one character being able to convince him to join. This doesn’t take away the unique bond between Ash and Calloway, but the predictability from the situation is hard to ignore. The obstacles that Johnny and Rosita face also suffer from being predictable since they deal with expectations that come from showbiz. The original film had various moments that diverted from predictability, which made it an enjoyable story. Sing 2 hit specific common beats that didn’t make an impact in terms of providing a different or unique story.
Ultimately, Sing 2 thrives through the emphasis on its main theme and the bond formed between two of its central characters. Characters that didn’t get much limelight in the first film get the attention and character development to flesh out their stories. However, this leads to some other characters not getting enough attention to have them matter as much. In addition, the predictability makes the overall story lack a unique quality that made its predecessor stand out. Thankfully, there is still enough for audiences to enjoy the film just in time for the holidays.
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- Rating - 7.5/107.5/10
Sing 2 thrives through the emphasis on its main theme and the bond formed between two of its central characters. Characters that didn’t get much limelight in the first film get the attention and character development to flesh out their stories. However, this leads to some other characters not getting enough attention to have them matter as much. In addition, the predictability makes the overall story lack a unique quality that made its predecessor stand out.