Teenager Jesse becomes reunited with Willy two years after the whale's jump to freedom as the teenager tries to rescue the killer whale and other orcas from an oil spill.Teenager Jesse becomes reunited with Willy two years after the whale's jump to freedom as the teenager tries to rescue the killer whale and other orcas from an oil spill.Teenager Jesse becomes reunited with Willy two years after the whale's jump to freedom as the teenager tries to rescue the killer whale and other orcas from an oil spill.
Let go of your "Save The Whales" placards, allow FREE WILLY 2: THE ADVENTURE HOME do the job for you. If you thought the original FREE WILLY had enough "Free the Whales" slogans to match a 3-ton Orca's weight, FREE WILLY 2 is even bigger, with its environmentalist propaganda that is! In its story and characters, it lacks that certain oomph of the original, which elevated it from its predictable genre origins. FREE WILLY 2 is much more predictable, with a by-th-numbers storyline that might just entertain the kids and give adults a toothache from all its sweetness. Still, for what its worth, FREE WILLY 2 is enjoyable family affair. I say it's at least worth a rental. For the record, at least its a better bargain than FLIPPER or even, not that it has any connection, JAWS: THE REVENGE.
The storyline is more filled of "Save the Whales" slogans than ever before. After leaving Willy (Keiko, assisted by an animatronic and CG double) from his leap of faith in the original's finale, Willy faces a new threat, this time outside the confines of a small tank. Jessie (Jason James Richter), now grown-up, is out to save the day again. The story also provides him a sort-of-girlfriend (Mary Kate Schellhardt) with a deep concern for the environment (Couldn't this movie ever be more nature-friendly?) and even a little brother named Elvis (Francis Capra), who is just so... annoying. Not that the film is crowded with good guys, bad guys and beleaguered whales, but why did they actually think that this kid, annoying and a bit spoiled at some point, would deepen the film's emotional level? Why they think a kid as nearly annoying as Elvis (who's simply annoying quips are more than enough to drive you to the breaking point) would be a good way to stretch Jessie's character, I really don't know.
Still, as family entertainment, FREE WILLY 2 does just about enough for a mild recommendation. The photography is adequate, capturing on film a lively shot of its environments and, of course the whales. I've read a trivia about the film that it uses much more animatronic whales than the first film, yet it's really hard to spot in most scenes due to the rather seamless effect. The story is shallow, predictable, but actually quite believable, although the Jessie-Elvis brotherhood is something that can easily be removed without doing any harm to the story. As family entertainment, I at least give it a fair and easy recommendation.
Rating: *** out of 5.
- Oct 29, 2008