Arts & Entertainment

‘Happy Death Day 2U’ keeps audiences wishing for clarity

It is not uncommon to see a mov­ie of at least mild success breach the surface in the sea of relevance once again. “Happy Death Day” is no ex­ception to the trend, as the sequel emerges two years after its positive reception, and is even slated for a third installment at a date still to be announced. “Happy Death Day 2U” is a wild ride from start to finish com­plete with laughter, mild confusion yet still some satisfaction, and sub-par plot elements.

“Happy Death Day 2U” has prem­ise that is more or less copied and pasted from its predecessor. College student Tree Gelbman (Jessica Rothe) is once again stuck in a ruthless cycle of mortality as she — with the help of friends Carter (Israel Broussard), Ryan (Phi Vu), Samar (Suraj Sharma), and Andrea (Sarah Yarkin) — must hunt down the notorious baby face mur­derer and figure out how to break the loop she has been thrown into…again.

While the movie is advertised under the genres of slasher/mystery, there were scenes few and far between that proved to justify this classifying of the film. However, despite the ob­vious lacking in these departments, the film contains a fair amount of quality humor. Much of it is clearly intentional, although it is executed fairly well through situational com­edy in addition to clever one-liners spaced throughout.

While it can be expected that the plot shares resemblances to the one before it, the new content serving to ‘spice up’ the story is underwhelming. At certain points in the film — name­ly the very beginning and the tail end — plot holes and disappointing at­tempts at twists are created out of thin air. When they appear in the film, the audience is left confused as they try to somehow create a convo­luted scenario where the twists would make sense. However, despite these occasions, the film maintains an un­expectedly high level of entertain­ment for the audience.

Despite the issues in the plot, there remains a single moving mo­ment in the film: A scene near the film’s conclusion featuring a tender emotional moment with Tree as she faces a difficult decision. This par­ticular scene may move the audi­ences to tears, proving to be a delicate moment for the character.

There is a narrow range of aspect in the film that are truly noteworthy, as most of the film is adequate at best, especially with the corny music that accompanies a large portion of the film’s ‘suspenseful’ scenarios. How­ever, through some divine interven­tion, the film manages to pull to­gether an occasional extremely impressive visual shot. While seldom seen, audiences will be impressed by some of the effects achieved as well as some brief shots where everything from lighting to music is absolutely spot on.

While it may induce a groan to simply hear about the film, “Happy Death Day 2U” is worth the trip to the theater if not for only a few laughs.