It is quiet a predicament being an adult, taking a seat amongst a room full of parents and children to watch a film about small blue creatures that live in a society of mushroom houses. To say I reluctantly walked into The Smurfs 2, already set in the mind frame of what I was going to receive over the next one and a half hours would be an understatement. But on the contrary, I was pleasantly surprised, especially given the vast amount of mediocre family films that are churned out of the wood work at the dawn of the impending holiday season.
The Smurfs 2 was simplistic enough; Smurfette is kidnapped by the evil Gargemal, and is whisked off to Paris where the other Smurfs follow in pursuit to rescue her. Weaving a story that was partially derivative, it held a cliche but relevant message for the vast amounts of children that would watch, “No matter where you come from, it’s who you choose to be.” Alongside that truthful message, was an abundance of colourful characters, aided with “fart” and “burp” jokes, which seems to be the somewhat necessary inclusion to spark a response from young children these days. But to much gratitude, adult humour is intertwined, which undoubtedly helps the swarm of parents that will have to hold onto their children throughout the running time.
Departing from the American setting from the first, it relishes the European landscape, being visually pleasing with the architecture and monuments of Paris, unintentionally becoming a trip adviser for keen travellers to the beautiful city of lights. The pacing is effortless, relishing in an uncomplicated narrative, and the visual effects, by no means groundbreaking, adapt to the cartoon relevance tonally.
The Smurfs 2 ranged from endearing, to cliche, bouncing between those two elements frequently. It is above most of the lazy affairs of this family, fun, friendly genre, and offers a quality mix of child and adult humour, never asking more from its intended audience than it could in turn, give back. And as I sat, surrounded by the child demographic, and the dragged along parents, there were moments of undiluted fun, that had me undoubtedly smiling and enjoying my adult self.
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