What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this sequel has some serious moments. Young Ted is poor at sports and so unwanted for the team that the other kids pick a girl before picking him. Mr. and Mrs. Newton are having financial troubles. A young child asks her father where babies come from, and his failure to answer may prompt viewing children to pose the same question. And in a very out-of-place scene, older daughter Ryce is nearly raped by a boy she has a crush on.
What's the story?
It's love at first sight when Beethoven meets Missy, a female St. Bernard, in the park. He helps her escape from her owner's ex-wife Regina and her boyfriend Floyd, who plans to use Missy as a tool to negotiate for more alimony. A few months later, the Newton kids track Beethoven to the basement of Regina's building, where Missy has given birth to puppies. The kids get Beethoven and the pups away just before Regina finds Missy. Regina wants the puppies back after she learns that they're worth a lot of money. Though the kids try to keep the puppies a secret, skipping school in order to keep them fed, Mr. and Mrs. Newton find out about them. Reluctantly agreeing to keep them, Mr. Newton takes the family on a Fourth of July camping trip. Little does he know that Regina and Floyd are staying nearby.
Is it any good?
If one St. Bernard is cute, how about six of them? That's the idea behind this sequel, which is in some ways better than the first, at least for parents. For one thing, Beethoven isn't quite so sloppy as he was last time. And father George Newton (the typically droll Charles Grodin) isn't treated like such an idiot. An 11-year-old viewer liked Beethoven's 2nd better than the first for the cute romance between Beethoven and Missy.
Like the previous film, Beethoven's 2nd is thinly plotted, essentially only an excuse to put these dogs onscreen. It was in poor taste to include a scene in which daughter Ryce is nearly raped by a drunken boy on whom she has a crush in a movie otherwise suitable for young children.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the film's adult themes. How did Ryce get away from her attacker? What role did alcohol play in the attack? How would you handle yourself in that situation?