Critics Consensus

The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part Is Certified Fresh

Plus, What Men Want is likable but a little fluffy, Cold Pursuit is an effective, darkly funny thriller, and The Prodigy is slow and derivative.

by | February 7, 2019 | Comments

This weekend at the movies, we’ve got a brickbuster sequel (The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part, featuring the voices of Chris Pratt and Elizabeth Banks), a gender-swapped remake (What Men Want, starring Taraji P. Henson and Aldis Hodge), a stone-cold vigilante (Cold Pursuit, starring Liam Neeson and Laura Dern), and a creepy kid (The Prodigy, starring Taylor Schilling). What are the critics saying?

The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part (2019) 84%

A lot of folks were skeptical when Warner Bros. announced they were planning a feature film based on LEGOs, the decidedly non-narrative building blocks popular with kids the world over. All of that changed when the film finally came out in early 2014 and, to everyone’s surprise, was actually really good. We’ve gotten a couple of spinoffs since then, but this week brings the first true sequel in the cheekily titled The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part. This time around, fledgling Master Builder Emmet (Chris Pratt) springs into action and embarks on a spacefaring adventure when Lucy (Elizabeth Banks), Batman (Will Arnett), and a few other Bricksburg residents are kidnapped by Duplo-sized aliens from the Systar System (you can probably see where the movie’s going with this setup). Critics say The Second Part isn’t quite as surprising or fresh as the first film, but it’s still a fairly fun and satisfying experience for the whole family, and it’s Certified Fresh, making it another early-year treat like its predecessor.

What Men Want (2019) 42%

Generally speaking, romantic comedies are so formulaic that it usually takes something really out of the ordinary to stand out. Back in 2001, Nancy Meyers achieved great box office success — less so with critics — with the high-concept comedy What Women Want, which explored what would happen if an egocentric man were suddenly gifted with the ability to read the minds of women. That movie also benefited from a talented cast that included Helent Hunt, Marisa Tomei, Alan Alda, and a pre-controversy Mel Gibson. Fast forward to 2019, and we now have a gender-swapped version of the tale starring Taraji P. Henson as a female sports agent who, suddenly able to read men’s thoughts, uses her newfound power to rise in her career and learn a few lessons about the opposite sex. Critics so far have responded to What Men Want about the same as they did to the original film, saying that its leads and lighthearted story are likable enough, but also that it’s an uneven comedy that telegraphs its jokes and provides few, if any, surprises in the narrative department. As far as the box office, though, we’ll have to wait and see if it matches the earlier film’s $374 million total.

Cold Pursuit (2019) 68%

It’s the first quarter of a new year, which means we’re in prime Liam Neeson Vigilante Movie season, and sure enough, this week brings us the latest in the aging star’s late-career resurgence as an action hero, controversial interviews notwithstanding. A remake of Norwegian thriller In Order of DisappearanceCold Pursuit follows Neeson’s Colorado snowplow driver Nels Coxman, who sets out in search of frigid justice when his son is killed by a local drug kingpin who harbors a particularly fierce protective streak over his own spawn. The one thing Cold Pursuit has over other Neeson thrillers of late, critics say, is a nasty, dark sense of humor, which reveals itself in ridiculous kills that are sometimes played for laughs. Overall, it’s a solid outing for Neeson and a worthy transplant of the original film, whose director Hans Petter Moland was also tapped to helm this remake.

The Prodigy (2019) 42%

There’s a long history of creepy kids wreaking havoc in horror movies, so it’s a little difficult for any new take on the subject to set itself apart from the others that have come before it. Such is the case with this week’s The Prodigy, a new fright flick that stars Taylor Schilling and Peter Mooney as exasperated parents Sarah and John trying to make sense of the erratic behavior of their son Miles (Jackson Robert Scott). Despite the warnings of the various experts who examine Miles, the young couple attempt to suss out the source of his violent quirks and discover something supernatural may be to blame. So far, The Prodigy has split the critics, nearly half of whom think the film is a competently crafted exercise in slow-build suspense while the other half feel it suffers from pacing issues, murky storytelling, and a less than satisfying payoff. In other words, if you’re looking for a good scare, your mileage may vary with this one.

Also Opening This Week In Limited Release

  • To Dust (2018) , a drama about a devout Hasidic man seeking to understand the biological nature of his recently deceased wife’s physical decay, is at 89%.
  • The Final Wish (2018) , a horror film about a grieving man who discovers a sinister wish-granting urn, is at 88%.
  • Lords of Chaos (2018) , a biopic about pioneering Norwegian black metal band Mayhem, is at 79%.
  • The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot (2018) , starring Sam Elliott as the titular hero in a story that accurately reflects its title, is at 77%.
  • The Gospel of Eureka (2018) , a documentary about the connections between a small town’s drag queens and evangelical Christian community, is at 75%.
  • St. Agatha (2018) , a horror film about a pregnant con woman who seeks shelter at a convent with dark secrets, is at 64%.
  • Everybody Knows (2018) , starring Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz in Asghar Farhadi‘s drama about the secrets that surface when a child is abducted during a wedding celebration, is at 62%.
  • Untogether (2018) , a romantic comedy about a pair of couples struggling with unusual relationship issues, is at 32%.
  • Under the Eiffel Tower (2018) , a romantic comedy about a man who travels to France with a younger ladies’ man in hopes of finding new love, is at 29%.
  • The Amityville Murders (2018) , a new take on the story of mass murderer Ronald DeFeo Jr. and the house he claimed compelled him to kill, is at 0%.
  • Berlin, I Love You (2019) , an ensemble anthology film comprised of 10 stories set in the titular city, is at 0%.

Tag Cloud

CBS All Access dreamworks Hulu sag awards 2015 japan E! franchise news heist movie Best Actor Spectrum Originals young adult television The Purge zero dark thirty streaming YouTube Red monster movies leaderboard docudrama Endgame cancelled TV shows TBS nfl posters miniseries finale reboot CBS award winner medical drama spy thriller Winners History Elton John Oscar spanish language Oscars MGM Turner Classic Movies comic book movie MSNBC police drama Set visit crime drama worst movies fast and furious Music Mystery DC streaming service Sundance TV Disney Awards Tour Ovation Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Schedule women summer TV preview DGA Logo 73rd Emmy Awards Ghostbusters summer TV ghosts sequels Paramount football spider-verse 21st Century Fox Amazon Prime Video natural history psychological thriller foreign Emmys 2017 adaptation king arthur Calendar ABC Lifetime Christmas movies MTV hist laika slashers political drama FX Amazon Tarantino archives The Arrangement comedies popular Thanksgiving Sundance Now Pet Sematary justice league mockumentary Lucasfilm Fox Searchlight RT21 BBC America green book crime thriller FXX Grammys dc italian dceu criterion FOX Red Carpet richard e. Grant cats anthology Year in Review halloween tv breaking bad universal monsters The Walt Disney Company streamig cancelled TV series razzies IFC comic book movies 2018 new york reviews BBC One DC Universe Valentine's Day blockbuster prank ABC Family slasher Premiere Dates rom-coms summer preview psycho sopranos mcc canceled TV shows unscripted telelvision crime rotten movies we love elevated horror Shudder Cosplay Television Critics Association ViacomCBS Spike YA Lifetime vampires blaxploitation Classic Film The Witch stoner Hallmark Christmas movies San Diego Comic-Con live action TV Christmas anime war 90s documentaries Nat Geo based on movie Western Crackle Marathons Chernobyl Tags: Comedy black facebook Mary poppins Comic Book binge Mary Tyler Moore zombies VH1 cooking obi wan comiccon true crime Podcast golden globes scary movies Sundance sitcom Rom-Com Universal action-comedy politics thriller Quiz Disney+ Disney Plus YouTube Premium Tokyo Olympics Trivia DirecTV Mindy Kaling Epix Pirates rt labs critics edition Comedy Apple BET IFC Films australia Superheroes BBC Holiday critics SXSW 2022 2021 feel good Stephen King Esquire genre zombie strong female leads Apple TV+ satire nbcuniversal Funimation critic resources Marvel Television Freeform spain Star Wars emmy awards Vudu CNN HBO Max rt labs Pop SXSW Instagram Live GoT Disney Plus Spring TV revenge twilight The Academy cops NBC Mary Poppins Returns toy story Avengers Kids & Family PlayStation spinoff fresh HBO japanese AMC Plus Best Actress Comedy Central BAFTA asian-american singing competition dragons Nominations First Look obituary 71st Emmy Awards hollywood Peacock Acorn TV deadpool X-Men Comic-Con@Home 2021 golden globe awards toronto king kong Super Bowl serial killer trailers Country 94th Oscars new star wars movies halloween Opinion Summer Brie Larson Rocketman Mudbound Exclusive Video Holidays mob Toys SundanceTV American Society of Cinematographers kaiju what to watch 20th Century Fox Photos IMDb TV 93rd Oscars Amazon Studios Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Heroines historical drama game show See It Skip It GIFs Fox News comic comic books video on demand WarnerMedia Tumblr werewolf HFPA 2019 independent Masterpiece travel indiana jones worst canceled Dark Horse Comics Election Hear Us Out TruTV french 2016 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards biopic live event Marvel Animation Best Picture APB Image Comics Paramount Plus scene in color Pop TV saw Musicals PBS Fargo nature Star Trek Warner Bros. Britbox Best Director video A&E cancelled television all-time new zealand Hollywood Foreign Press Association screenings christmas movies screen actors guild Universal Pictures Best and Worst dramedy Horror royal family Ellie Kemper transformers diversity Winter TV films 007 supernatural SDCC Sci-Fi Sneak Peek Adult Swim animated Syfy cinemax RT History Video Games aapi blockbusters Teen 24 frames boxoffice Writers Guild of America Sony Pictures LGBT Fantasy kids Legendary Black History Month TNT remakes marvel cinematic universe concert Drama MCU OWN sports TCA Awards godzilla Tomatazos theme song joker TV movies name the review comics james bond Rock scary Emmy Nominations rt archives TCA 2017 Extras LGBTQ TLC talk show Discovery Channel Song of Ice and Fire Reality Interview indie jamie lee curtis book adaptation ID OneApp TCA Binge Guide biography aliens venice New York Comic Con superman Pixar doctor who 4/20 Family HBO Go composers BET Awards Reality Competition hispanic festival science fiction Action kong WGN Showtime First Reviews Cannes Netflix Travel Channel Columbia Pictures A24 FX on Hulu free movies PaleyFest 2020 superhero Amazon Prime Rocky high school USA romantic comedy VICE game of thrones Food Network cartoon The CW USA Network Disney Channel Women's History Month Fall TV stand-up comedy crossover ratings cults Pacific Islander Character Guide ITV Wes Anderson Box Office Walt Disney Pictures cars best Arrowverse marvel comics The Walking Dead scorecard latino adenture technology Film Netflix Christmas movies hispanic heritage month renewed TV shows Crunchyroll 99% Film Festival know your critic CMT Tubi jurassic park Prime Video adventure docuseries Black Mirror YouTube Anna Paquin international TV One target Turner period drama E3 wonder woman movie CW Seed Nickelodeon space directors Neflix Awards Baby Yoda Biopics Disney streaming service Academy Awards Martial Arts debate Alien Comics on TV Lionsgate gangster dexter Watching Series olympics Starz basketball South by Southwest Film Festival boxing casting Certified Fresh National Geographic movies spanish spider-man vs. streaming movies south america cancelled lord of the rings NBA VOD 45 72 Emmy Awards Musical trophy batman Superheroe President a nightmare on elm street classics Creative Arts Emmys DC Comics El Rey art house versus Television Academy Broadway Paramount Network Bravo dogs disaster quibi robots series Trophy Talk children's TV TV Land 79th Golden Globes Awards Captain marvel sequel TCM parents hidden camera Pride Month book TIFF child's play rotten teaser legend dark discovery Apple TV Plus Marvel Studios black comedy Polls and Games AMC mission: impossible Infographic TCA Winter 2020 harry potter stop motion NYCC tv talk mutant Hallmark die hard GLAAD ESPN 1990s romance Countdown Shondaland chucky Cartoon Network social media TV renewals Trailer festivals suspense witnail ABC Signature documentary pirates of the caribbean