Hitting blu-ray and DVD today from Warner Brothers is the brilliant follow-up to the 2014 hit, Paddington. Ben Whishaw returns to voice the iconic bear in the red hat and the blue duffle coat, as he continues to win hearts around London, and the world.
The first film boasted a truckload of recognisable English talent, and the sequel is no different. Returning cast includes Sally Hawkins, Hugh Bonneville, Peter Capaldi, Julie Walters, Michael Gambon, Imelda Staunton, Madeleine Harris, and Samuel Joslin. This time around they are joined by a scene-chewing Hugh Grant as the villain of the piece, Phoenix Buchanan.
This is one of the rare sequels that builds and exceeds upon the original, which is itself, heart-warmingly charming. The follow-up film finds our young bear seeking a birthday present for his Aunt Lucy (Staunton), and comes across the perfect gift, in a pop-up book of London landmarks.
Unfortunately, the book, itself, is incredibly valuable, it contains a code to a hidden treasure that Buchanan, is desperate to get his hands on to finance his one-man show, and reclaim his failing stardom.
Soon, Paddington finds himself framed for the theft of the book, and on his way to prison. In the big house he soon finds allies in a trio of characters, including the prison chef, Nuckle’s (Brendan Gleeson).
While the Brown family works to find the real culprit and free their beloved bear, Paddington may end up escaping!
Delightful and joyous, Paddington, both the bear and the film, find the best in all of us, because he sees the best in all of us. He exemplifies the most noble of British traditions, manners. There is an earnestness and honesty to the character, created by Micheal Bond, that spills off the screen and into the viewer’s heart.
The blu-ray and DVD, which is available today, brings the bear home, and is loaded with family-friendly extras, including a commentary by writer/director Paul King, featurettes about the making of the film, how to make a marmalade sandwich (Paddington’s favourite food), and a look at some of the new characters that populate the young bear’s world.
This is one of those honest and joyous films that has something for the entire family. It’s wonderfully entertaining, the effects that bring Paddington to life are top-notch, and his emotive eyes take you in from the beginning.
It’s wonderful to see Bond’s creation brought to the big screen, and the film’s style and design pays wonderful homage to the original stories that are a huge part of so many people’s childhood.
Paddington 2 complete enchants and is available now on blu-ray and DVD from Warner Brothers today.