Sunday, March 26, 2023

REVIEW: Happy Death Day 2U (live action movie)

Happy Death Day 2U is the sequel to Happy Death Day, although it switches up the genre a bit - this time around, it's more of a sci-fi comedy than a horror comedy. I bought my copy new.


This picks up less than 24 hours after the end of the first movie. Ryan, Carter's roommate, is killed by someone in a Baby mask shortly after checking on the experimental quantum reactor he's been working on with a couple other students. He then wakes up and reexperiences the same day all over again - when he tells Carter and Tree about this, they, of course, immediately know what's going on. They had assumed that everything was finished after Tree closed her time loop. Now they discover that Ryan is accidentally responsible for the time loops, and he's stuck in one himself. Just as they figure this out, things go even more wrong, and Tree ends up stuck in her original time loop...but in a parallel dimension. As Tree figures out the differences between her current dimension and her original one and tries to close the time loop for good, she realizes that she's faced with a choice: staying in her new dimension or going back to her original dimension. Both choices require personal sacrifices.

This wasn't as good as the first movie, which blended horror and comedy really nicely, but it was still an enjoyable continuation. In fact, it continued the original story so well that I was surprised to learn, upon watching the extras, that a sequel hadn't originally been planned.

This felt so connected to the original movie, both in terms of scenes and emotional beats, that it at times felt more like an extended bonus feature for the first movie than a new movie in its own right. This wasn't necessarily a bad thing. I really enjoyed the characters, both the returning ones and the new ones. Danielle (Rachel Matthews) got a bigger part and was somehow even more hilariously horrible. Lori (Ruby Mordine) got some real closure. And we got to skip all of the "Tree is a drunken horrible sorority girl" stuff and skip straight to the "Tree is awesome and funny" stuff, which was nice. Someone in the extras said that Jessica Rothe (Tree) has "great access to her comedic anger" and they were so right about that. Her rage in this movie was fabulous.

Just a warning: instead of repeatedly being murdered, in this particular movie, Tree takes care of her resets herself by killing herself, so there's a suicide montage. It was fun in a weird way, especially the skydiving bit, but it may still be an issue for some folks. Plus, every time she died I couldn't help but think back to the revelation in the first movie that Tree was experiencing lasting damage - this movie still included that detail, but it completely glossed over the fact that she should have still had accumulated damage from the first movie.

If you liked the humor and characters in the first movie, this is definitely worth watching, although I preferred the horror-comedy genre blend of the first movie more.


Gag reel, deleted scene, a couple short featurettes, and possibly some other stuff I'm forgetting.

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