The Addams Family 2 Review: A standard horror family animated road trip
Horror’s scariest family, The Addams Family, had a big return with the 2019 animated reboot and now return again for a family road trip sequel that’s pretty par for the course.
While the first film may not have been something overtly perfect, The Addams Family gave fans, both new and old, an incredibly fun return perfect for a family Halloween flick. It was great how the animation and character designs felt more akin to the original drawings and there were plenty of fun storylines and horror references that made it a joyous reunion. Not to mention, Wednesday (voiced by Chloe Grace Mortez) absolutely stole the show with the level of dark sass she displayed and the solid impact of her story. It’s no wonder Tim Burton is returning to the franchise for a live-action Netflix series mainly focused on Wednesday. As for this sequel, well, it sometimes offers more of the same of what made the first film so much fun.
We’re no longer trapped within the walls of the iconic Addams family home as Gomez (voiced by Oscar Isaacs) decides to take everyone on a family road trip across the U.S. after he begins to feel isolated by Wednesday and Pugsley (now voiced by Javon Walton) growing up. Yes, the Hotel Transylvania series literally just did this in the last movie where everyone went on a cruise. It’s a shame that The Addams Family is already having to pull out cliché storylines from other modern animated family flicks, but there’s still plenty of fun moments to be had on an Addams Family style road trip.
The locations they head to, places like The Alamo and Sleepy Hollow, are fitting for the Addams Family looking for places with a historically deadly background and I’m just as bummed as Wednesday about her not being able to achieve her “squad goals” by going to Salem. There is a part of me that wishes the film did a little more with these locations to amp up the horror fun, especially given the rich horror history of Sleepy Hollow, but it was a blast to see Pugsley have some explosive fun in the Grand Canyon and the voodoo doll sequence between Wednesday and Pugsley was hilarious. There’s also some fun stuff with Pugsley’s unsuccessful attempts to flirt with girls and Uncle Fester (voiced by Nick Kroll) slowly transforming in a Lovecraftian monster after one of Wednesday’s experiments.
Wednesday, once again, is the total breakout star of this iteration as Mortez’s line delivery perfectly evokes the dark sense of humor and sense of superiority Wednesday is known for. She’s always ready to make life hell for Pugsley and really has no fear of anyone she meets. She’s confident, calculated, and absolutely devious in the best way possible and although this story is a bit of rehash of the first film in terms of its Wednesday centered story, it’s still a nice continuation. Once again, Wednesday is going through a rebellious phase within her family and now there are questions surrounding if she got mixed up at the hospital and isn’t even an Addams at all. Admittedly, it’s a plot that’s overblown, drawn out, and totally predictable, but Wednesday leading the charge on it makes it fun and its nice that Lurch (voiced by Conrad Vernon) gets a little more do here.
As a whole, The Addams Family 2 works just fine as another animated adventure, but it’s just a shame that it pretty much falls in line with most modern animated sequels. The side stories of Pugsley finding a girlfriend, Uncle Fester’s tentacle transformation, and Grandmama Addams (voiced by Bette Midler) throwing a house party while everyone’s away are super thin and only work in extending and overstuffing the plot. They have solid moments but are totally unnecessary. The script is far weaker than the first film and most of the jokes are either modern dialogue trappings or references that are subpar. The first film at least felt like it earned the Addams Family name where this sequel is just a generic family vacation plot featuring the Addams Family.
The Addams Family 2 might be another mediocre animated sequel, but there’s still enough to it to be a perfectly fine family film for the Halloween season. If you really enjoyed Wednesday from the first film and simply want to see more of her and some of the other antics within the Addams Family, then The Addams Family 2 is a decent watch, but not much more than that.