“The Addams Family 2” is an animated sequel to the first animated movie. This one has most all the same actors returning to voice the same oddball characters as before. So, if the first animated “The Addams Family” movie was your cup of poison, than you are about to hit the jokey jackpot of quirky animated goofiness.
The main group in the family Addams are Gomez Addams (voiced by Oscar Isaac), his wife Morticia (voiced by Charlize Theron), with daughter Wednesday (voiced by Chloë Grace Moretz) and son Pugsley (voiced by Javon Walton). There is also Gomez’s brother Uncle Fester (voiced by Nick Kroll), and his mother Grandmama Addams (voiced by Bette Midler).
They eventually meet up with Cousin It (voiced by Snoop Dogg). Oh, and there is their butler Lurch (voiced by Conrad Vernon). Young Wednesday is feeling cranky when she feels her family does not understand her. Gomez knows that a family vacation and road trip will bring the family together. Uncle Fester has ‘helped’ little Wednesday with a strange science experiment. But it starts turning him into a tentacle-armed octopus-man.
The super Scientist who is behind Wednesday’s school science fair is the rich and famous Cyrus Strange (voiced by Bill Hader). Strange sees that Wednesday has a formula that he really wants. It is the formula that transformed Uncle Fester, and he will stop at nothing to get it. Strange sends his father, Rupert (voiced by Wallace Shawn), to tell a fake tale of babies switched at birth to Gomez and Morticia.
The family starts to travel across the United States, but they have Rupert and a very large henchman close behind. The visit Niagara Falls and they all have fun going over in a barrel. They stop at Sleepy Hollow to tell ghost stories. They travel to Texas to visit San Antonio. Gomez says that he knows this is a wonderful stop — The Alamo — since many hundreds of soldiers died there. If must be a fun place! But the rest of the sign lights up after they go in and it says something very different (The Ala Motel).
Being chased by the wily Rupert and his huge evil buddy, the family tries to disguise Wednesday as a Miss Chili Pepper beauty contest girl. That almost seems to work. But Rupert is after them again and they move on to the Grand Canyon. Wednesday captures Rupert, and he tells her of the ‘switched at birth’ story. She decides to leaver her family and goes to see Cyrus Strange in California. Lurch helps her get though Death Valley, where they encounter some surprisingly friendly biker gang members. These bikers really LOVE disco ballads. Morticia and Gomez are heartbroken that Wednesday had decided to leave.
Back at the family home, Grandmama Addams is putting on a huge “House Party”. In this case, it is a “Haunted House Party”. Things get way out of control, until Cousin It arrives and puts on a big rap concert. Back on the West Coast, Wednesday and Cyrus Strange meet up. Wednesday thinks that her ‘beautiful mind’ might be better served by being with her ‘real’ father. Unless it is all a hoax, meant to trick Wednesday into giving up her amazing formula that keeps turning Uncle Fester into walking, talking sushi platter.
“The Addams Family 2” is based on the original Charles Addams cartoons from years ago. The delightfully macabre sense of humor was a big draw for many people. His cartoons have spawned a TV show, several live-action movies, and now this animated series of movies. But the further that these get from the original biting humor, the more and more drab and lifeless the Addams Family group becomes.
Chloë Grace Moretz does her best to give Wednesday Addams a droll and cynical viewpoint of the world. The rest of the Family has lesser grades of success in doing vocal work for the voices of Gomez, Morticia and Uncle Fester. Bill Hader and Wallace Shawn doing the voices for Cyrus and Rupert Strange are a welcome addition. The animation is clear and bright, for a dark and spooky Family. There are lots of clever visual gags and some funny dialog.
“The Addams Family 2” – like the theme song says, “They really are a scree-am”. But in this case, they are less of a “scree-am” than the first time.
The Addams Family 2
Directed by: Greg Tiernan, Conrad Vernon
Screenplay by: Dan Hernandez, Benji Samit, Ben Queen, Susanna Fogel
Based on Characters by: Charles Addams
Starring: Oscar Isaac, Charlize Theron, Chloë Grace Moretz, Nick Kroll, Javon Walton, Snoop Dogg, Bette Midler, Bill Hader, Wallace Shawn
Music by: Mychael Danna, Jeff Danna
Distributed by: United Artists Releasing
Release date: October 1, 2021
Length: 93 minutes
MPAA rating: PG for macabre and rude humor, violence and language
Genre: Animated Comedy