With what looks set to be a messy, unfocused Oscars ceremony looming on the horizon, it’s looking like they’ll be anything but awesome this year.

However, if I said “Everything is awesome…” you’d probably know straight away what I was referencing, such was the popularity of a certain song (and film) that was even catchier than last year’s Baby Shark (“De-de-de-de-de-de-de-de-dehhh, Baby Shark…”).

That’s right, The Lego Movie, with its inevitable sequel, The Lego Movie 2 (Cert G, 107 mins) hoping to build – geddit? – on the success of the smash-hit film from a few years back.

We’re back with upbeat Emmet (Chris Pratt), WildStyle/Lucy (Elizabeth Banks), Batman (Will Arnett) and the gang, with The Kid from the first film having grown up a bit.

His Lego city/world of Brickburg has consequently taken on a much grittier, more apocalyptic look and tone – not that you’d know it from chirpy, cheerful Emmet.

However, things soon take a turn for the worse with monstrous alien invaders from the Systar System (amusingly clunky Duplo brick creations made by the kid’s little sister) not only constantly hassling Apocalypseburg-nee-Brickburg’s inhabitants, but soon seeing Batman, Lucy and others kidnapped.

Batman has been chosen as the unwilling groom-to-be in an upcoming wedding instigated by the merciless queen of the Systar System (Tiffany Haddish), and even more pressingly, Emmet’s fears of an impending Armageddon threatens the end of brick-based life as we know it.

Somehow, he has to toughen himself up a bit to go through (or up) ‘the Stairgate’ to lead a rescue mission in the world beyond, get his gal and his pal back, and avert Armageddon – without falling under the spell of some catchy music…

You know what you’re getting with this one, with the sequel to the barnstorming The Lego Movie providing much of the same solid entertainment as that striking film did.

To be blunt, it’s just not as good as the first film – but then, that would be quite a task to achieve, and The Lego Movie 2 comes reasonably close.

After all, it’s stuffed to the gills full of knowing nods and references to all kinds of people and things, has a dizzying line-up of stars providing solid voiceover work for their cameo characters, has admittedly catchy music and, above all, plenty of excellent Lego-inspired vistas.

As some icing on the cake, a key new character – Rex Dangervest (also voiced by Pratt) – is like a wonderful tribute to classic Kurt Russell characters amalgamated together.

Put all of that together, and while The Lego Movie 2 isn’t quite awesome, it’s still pretty great.

  • Verdict: 8/10