George Miller is a director that I highly respect. Not only did he craft some of the best action movies of all time with the "Mad Max" series, but he also was able to make a great family film as well with "Babe" and its sequel "Babe: Pig in the City". Afterward, he then crafted his first animated film "Happy Feet" which was about a dancing emperor penguin who is disowned by his own clan then discovers a conspiracy about the fish disappearing which may involve "aliens" (which are essentially the humans). It was a fun movie and it was able to nab Miller an Oscar, though I still don't think that should've convinced him to make a sequel because "Happy Feet Two" is not a good film. It's quite honestly a mess and a sequel that I still don't know why exists. It does though, and I'll tell you why this sequel doesn't exactly work.
Taking place after the events of the first film, Mumble (Elijah Wood) is trying to connect with his son Erik (Ava Acres) and is struggling due to his son being unable to dance. After he and his friends leave Emperor Land hoping to find his place, Erik than arrives in Adélie-Land where he finds that the ruler, a puffin named Sven (Hank Azaria) has prophecized that he will be destined to stop the apocalypse of Antarctica. It gets even more complicated afterward when a giant iceberg traps the penguins in Emperor-Land in the brick walls and that there is no escape so Mumble, Erik, and his friends to help get the others out of their ice-walled prison. Also, there's a subplot involving two krill named Will (Brad Pitt) and Bill (Matt Damon) who leave their swarm behind to try to see what lies out there. Yeah, this movie's plot is pretty messy as you can tell.
The story for this film was so un-captivating and messy that it really left me baffled that Miller thought this film would work. There are scenes in this film that just drag out and go on forever that it made me bored and frustrated. During those moments, I kept thinking to myself "How long are they gonna drag this scene out?" That's a question I don't like asking at all and sadly, it was one that kept coming into my head a lot. Also, I wasn't a fan of the editing. This film is really poorly edited as its transitions felt very uneven and also had a very unhealthy obsession of using wipe cuts that it started to remind me of the numerous wipe cuts used in "Battlefield Earth". That's an even worse sign. As far as the characters go, I really couldn't find much to like about the new ones or old ones. They all just felt they had to be there in order for the film to work, but had nothing significant to them. Erik is a cute character and he seems to act cool, but that's it. There's nothing else to him that's memorable. Also, Sven was a completely pointless character and added nothing to the plot. Even the older characters like Ramon (Robin Williams) and Gloria (P!nk) also couldn't bring their old charm back and when you can't make a character played by the great Robin Williams, you know you're in trouble. With all that said about the film, there are two things about it that I do in fact like. One is the animation. It was once again very well made and breathtaking by Animal Logic and clearly had lots of effort and work put into it. The other thing I think is, in fact, the subplot with Will and Bill. They at least had personality and Brad Pitt and Matt Damon's performance to boast, but sadly they weren't on screen very often and just felt shoehorned in to pad out the running time. I wish Miller made a full film or short about these two characters instead cause they were the most interesting part.
With all that said, "Happy Feet Two" is a very clumsy sequel that can't justify its own existence with a story that's too cluttered and a mess, very boring and bland characters, and animation that while good is wasted on a film like this. As much as I like and respect George Miller, I can easily say that this is one of his worst films to date. I'm glad he's at least moving away from "Happy Feet" because I really hope he doesn't make a film this cluttered and messy again. Then again, every good director needs to have at least one stinker. I guess this one is his.