Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising [Bad Neighbours 2]

"Good"

Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising [Bad Neighbours 2] Review


While it's amusing and sometimes very funny, there's an air of desperation about this sequel to the 2014 breakout hit comedy. The main problem is that, instead of pushing the characters forward in any way, the plot is basically a rehash of the exact same series of events. So the cast and crew rush through it in the hopes that audiences might not notice, throwing in issues like girl power and gay marriage to make it look like they noticed the criticisms of the first movie.

It's been a year or so, and now Mac and Kelly (Seth Rogen and Rose Byrne) are selling their house to move to the suburbs before the birth their second child. But just as the sale is agreed, a sorority moves in next door, founded by Shelby (Chloe Grace Moretz) in defiance of the usual frat-house rules. They get help from former fraternity leader Teddy (Zac Efron), who's aimless because his best pal Pete (Dave Franco) has just agreed to marry his boyfriend. So Mac and Kelly are worried that the loud parties are going to jeopardise the sale, and when talking with Shelby fails, the stand-off escalates into all-out war. And when the girls turn on him, Teddy swaps sides to help take them down.

The dialogue is packed with hilariously wrong humour, mainly adult gags that are spoken around very young children. The idea of a little girl who chooses a pink dildo as her favourite toy is good for one laugh, but perhaps not the next 10 the filmmakers try to wring from it. Meanwhile, there's a strange exhaustion in the air, as both Teddy and Mac seem tired of all of this nonsense. Efron and Rogen play the roles with impeccable timing, but both seem aware that they've already pushed these characters as far as they possibly can. Byrne has a lot more spark, and provides most of the best laughs. And Moretz shows some skill at spiky silliness.

There's plenty of raucous nuttiness to keep the audience chuckling, even if the comical set pieces seem less than imaginative. Perhaps this is because three more writers have joined screenwriters Andrew J. Cohen and Brendan O'Brien this time, pulling gags out of the air rather than rooting them in the characters. Plus plot points that seem lifted from a Cheech and Chong stoner comedy. At least the film still has a refreshingly adult approach to all of this juvenile misbehaviour. And the men-versus-women set-up at least shows an attempt to add some relevance to the idiocy.

Rich Cline

Watch the trailer for Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising:



Facts and Figures

Genre: Comedy

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Cast & Crew

Director: Nicholas Stoller

Producer: , James Weaver

Contactmusic


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