The first “Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs” was a delightful surprise. I have since made note of the fact that I should never underestimate Chris Miller and Phil Lord, a mistake I’ve made enough times now to identify it as a mistake. Those guys are busy with “The LEGO Movie” these days, and they’re gearing up on “22 Jump Street” as well, and if you saw last night’s premiere of “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” they directed that as well.
That didn’t leave a lot of time for them to make a sequel to the movie that pretty much launched them as feature directors, so Cody Cameron and Kris Pearn stepped up to direct the sequel, which is more ambitious on a story level, as well as much, much stranger. Considering what a margin for failure there was on the first film, I found myself wondering if they could pull off a sequel. When I sat down to talk to Bill Hader and Anna Faris, it was a huge relief to be able to have enjoyed the sequel as much as I did. It’s a different movie, but it builds on the pleasures of the first movie in very smart and enormously silly ways.
Bill Hader works pretty much non-stop these days, but I still feel like he’s an underused asset. He makes a great lead for these films because he does such a wonderful job capturing the optimism of Flint Lockwood, the uber-nerdy lead character whose life-long desire to invent informs everything he does and, ultimately, everything that happens in these films. The work that Anna Faris does in the film as Sam Sparks, the equally geeky meteorologist who fell for Flint in the first film, is a reminder of why she was so immediately appealing at the start of the “Scary Movie” series. There is no one who sounds quite so sunny, and I can honestly say there’s no one who sounds quite like her.
Sitting down to talk to the two of them about their return for the sequel and the new film’s energy was pretty much a delight. You could hear them up and down the hall of the Four Seasons even before walking into the room, and they had that “doing junket interviews all day” lunacy going. On a film like this, you don’t have to disguise that energy, and it made it very easy to talk to them.
I’ll have another interview coming later for this one, with Andy Samberg and Terry Crews paired up, and I’ll have a review of the film coming soon as well. I’ll just say this… if you’re a parent, you no doubt see plenty of films aimed at your kids and plenty of TV that feels like a chore. That is not the case with the preposterous “Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs 2.”
“CWACOM2” arrives in theaters September 27, 2013.