Where on earth do you begin to write about Paddington 2? Never before has a film exceeded my expectations so much and there are so many things I want to tell you all about it. The key message has to be that you MUST go and see it. Even if you though the original film a bit naff (I did – I didn’t even bother with the last 30 minutes on Amazon Prime as I was so bored) this is completely different. It’s a million times better. Paddington 2 move you to tears of both sadness and laughter, but also completely change your opinion of Hugh Grant as an actor.
Out on general release fro 10 November 2017, we were lucky enough to get to go to London last weekend to see a press screening of Paddington 2 thanks to Harper Collins, the publishers responsible for the book that plays one of the key roles in the film. I realise this last sentence may make no sense at all, but trust me it will if you see the film and there will be a separate blog post coming very soon all about the book itself.
The film starts with Paddington happily living with the Brown family in Windsor Gardens, London. He loves London and loves the family life that he has made with the Browns and Mrs Bird. He’s looking forward to celebrating his Great Aunt Lucy’s birthday and sending her something special as a birthday present. Just as soon as he’s earned enough money to do so.
I’m not going to give the plot away, other than to say that things don’t go quite to plan for poor Paddington. Despite always trying to see the best in everyone (a valuable life lesson from Great Aunt Lucy) it seems that not everyone has that much good in them and Paddington ends up innocently getting caught up in some rather sinister dealings that result in him having a spell behind bars. Even at Her Majesty’s Pleasure though Paddington still manages to see the best in everyone and makes some wonderful friends who admit they “like the little guy” and work together to try to help him and the Brown family clear Paddington’s good name.
The results are incredibly touching and I spotted a few grown ups wiping their eyes at the end of the film. Determined that we wouldn’t leave the cinema sad, Paddington 2 also features a grand finale in which Craig Revel Horwood has managed to choreograph an utterly brilliant routine. I have admit that I’d love to see the film again just for that routine.
That’s not the only magic in Paddington 2. The cast list reads like a Who’s Who of British acting with great names from Hug Bonneville to Hugh Grant. Brendan Gleeson to Julie Walters. Jim Broadbent to Peter Capaldi. If that wasn’t enough you’ve also got supporting roles filled by the likes of Richard Ayoade, Ben Miller, Joanna Lumley, Sanjeev Bhaskar, Tom Conti and Meera Syal. And if all those actors and actresses weren’t enough there’s plenty of train action too which had both Master C and my OH B completely transfixed.
Paddington 2 is quite simply one of those magical films that is perfect for the whole family. It’s just utterly charming. There was also plenty in the film that made the grown ups laugh as well as the children in the audience. I loved it and am just wondering if I can persuade the children to go again when it’s out in cinemas.
Paddington 2 is on general release here in the UK from 10 November 2017.
Disclaimer: We attended a press screening of Paddington 2 to celebrate the launch of the Harper Collins Paddington Pop-Up London book that ties in with the film. Look out for a further post all about the book very soon.