'Paddington 2' - Everyone's favorite bear is back and as loveable as ever

Premiere party The Moms event gave families the opportunity to see the film ahead of its release in America on Friday and guests received a Paddington plush toy and pop-up book

'Paddington 2' - Everyone's favorite bear is back and as loveable as ever

"Paddington 2" rolls into theaters this Friday and Euro correspondent Fahnia Thomas spoke with the cast about adult marmalade and "galactical" adventures. Paddington 2 seamlessly integrates the eponymous bear into the proceedings, to the point that it becomes easy to forget that he's not actually there interacting with the flesh and blood actors around him. Movie producers and animators have come a long way since then developing the character. Here, only Grant and Gleeson get really good lines. The animation work here is astonishing with lifelike features and movements that look real. However, his comic sensibilities, which always lean towards sarcasm (arguably, Grant's best performance is as the acidic lead in the 2002 dramedy About a Boy), fit in squarely with Paddington 2's sly tone. Many children's films are cloyingly sentimental and saddled with group-written scripts that buzz around aimlessly like lightning bugs in a jar. He grows up in their family, falls in love with them and finds out what he loves most, Marmalade. Paddington (once again voiced by Ben Whishaw) is settled in his new home with the Browns (Sally Hawkins, Hugh Bonneville). And their grandmother, Mrs. Bird (Julie Walters), keeps an eye on them all. The lovingly detailed tome takes the reader on a 3-D tour of London - the flawless birthday gift for Paddington's Anglophile Aunt Lucy, on the verge of turning 100 at the home for retired bears.

The movie looks unbelievable, from costuming and sets to the fact that every interaction with this computer-generated bear seems very real. He proceeds to his favorite place in London called Gruber's antique store.

Paddington finds a present for LucyCourtesy of Warner Bros.

The transitions - from Paddington showing London to Aunt Lucy to the flashbacks - are smooth and creative. Paddington 2 fits his sensibilities in more ways than one. Even the slapstick comedy sequences in the sequel are creatively executed and manage to pay homage to classic works of cinema (Charlie Chaplin's Modern Times in particular gets a amusing nod here), while still working on their own for those moviegoers who aren't familiar with the references being made. But Paddington finds himself in hot water when the book is stolen and he is framed for the crime, which lands him in prison with some menacing characters. Thus begins his journey to be released from jail and returned to those who love him most. Paddington ... goes to prison? Another way is his ability to make it through a tough situation leading to his trust in family and friends. After all, Paddington could have become just another bumbling, idiotic CGI creation getting into noisy mishaps, in the mode of Stuart Little or (shudder) Alvin and the Chipmunks. Since the movie achieves all its goals and more, we can go five stars. This quote applies to our daily routine and can and should be carried on in real life.

"Paddington 2" is rated PG for action and mild rude humor; running time: 103 minutes.

This family film about the adventures of a cute and cuddly bear in London is a delight for the entire family.


Lessons about family loyalty and the importance of looking for the good in everyone are served up along with heavy doses of cartoonish but very enjoyable comedy. If you're feeling grumpy on any level this movie is tailor made to warm the cockles of your heart. Even as it traces Phoenix's descent into dastardly "Da Vinci Code"-style intrigues, as well as the Browns' valiant efforts to clear the name of their newest family member, "Paddington 2" somehow morphs into one of the most memorable prison pictures of recent vintage, anchored by Brendan Gleeson's hilariously growling turn as the most intimidating of Paddington's fellow inmates".

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