Happy Feet Two

Movie review by
Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media
Happy Feet Two Movie Poster Image
Penguin sequel has fun musical numbers, a few mild scares.
  • PG
  • 2011
  • 100 minutes

Parents say

age 5+
Based on 12 reviews

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 17 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Educational Value

Kids are likely to pick up on the movie's environmental message about the dangers of global warming, as well as the importance of finding your own voice and encouraging your family and friends.

Positive Messages

Like the original, the sequel features a strong environmental message and also encourages parents to let their children believe in possibilities and follow their passions. Kids will also learn the importance of helping others and how every individual can make a huge impact.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Mumble and Gloria are kind, encouraging parents who want Eric to live up to his potential. Eric himself is sweet and believes in others, even though he's not confident at first about his own abilities. A mama penguin thinks of obstacles as challenges to overcome, so her daughter is a fearless young penguin. Bill and Will each go on their own journeys of self discovery that eventually lead them both "home."

Violence & Scariness

An iceberg traps the penguins in a snow valley that they can't climb out of, and a couple of times the situation looks dire for them. The krill are eaten by whales and other fish, so Will and Bill realize that they're at the bottom of the food chain. A huge elephant seal looks poised to harm Mumble, Eric, and their pals but then falls off a cliff and requires assistance. Two male seals battle for dominance. The predatory skuas try to peck at the penguin chicks.

Sexy Stuff

Penguin mates Mumble and Gloria embrace. Ramon is smitten with the beautiful Adelie penguin Carmen and calls out to her "You, me, egg, now!" in a suggestive way. They flirt throughout the movie.

Language

Insults/language like "loser," "idiots," "sucks," and "bottom feeders."

Consumerism

Nothing in the actual movie, but merchandise tie-ins are available in stores.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this sequel to 2006's Academy Award-winning animated adventure Happy Feet features many of the same environmental and family lessons for audiences. Global warming's impact on the penguin characters is again addressed; the peril that comes with natural disasters may frighten the youngest of viewers -- as could some scenes with large/menacing elephant seals and predatory skua birds. There are also a few mild innuendos from the penguin voiced by Robin Williams, and some viewers may interpret the relationship between two male krill as having gay undertones, particularly when Bill suggests they start a swarm of their own. But ultimately this is a tale of family, friendship, and what it means to find your individual voice -- your own special gift.

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bySally Fields April 6, 2012

Gender imbalance

Another example of predominantly male protagonists, so not recommended for your daughters!
Adult Written bykylog42 November 28, 2011

Too scary for my 4 1/2 year old

I brought my 4 1/2 year old daughter, who has seen Toy Story, Cars and the latest Winnie the Pooh movie. I wish I hadn't brought her. This had way more s... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byMark_chapter_16... June 16, 2020

Anti-Christian Views in a Kids Movie

This movie contains Anti-Christian views that are not Biblical. If God created man and woman perfectly, and then you define marriage as something else. You are... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byDark-Shadow-the-Wolf April 18, 2020

Some mild peril, plus the "sex" scene the parents are talking about is just that the Will and Bill are best friends. Nothing very strict.

There is some mild peril in the movie, the dark, black and white scenes even scared me a little. Especially the part that the doctors/scientists were violently... Continue reading

What's the story?

In this follow-up to 2006's Happy Feet, Mumble (voiced by Elijah Wood) and Gloria (now Pink, since Brittany Murphy died in 2009) are the parents to penguin chick Eric (Ava Acres), who can neither find his "happy" dancing feet nor his singing voice -- a rite of passage for all penguins. After Ramon (Robin Williams) decides to leave the Emperor penguins and return to Adelie land, Eric and two young friends follow, so Mumble must go retrieve the young 'uns. Meanwhile, a melting iceberg hits the Emperor penguins' natural habitat and traps them in a snowy valley they can't climb out of -- leaving Mumble the only adult to brainstorm a rescue. Mumble enlists the Adelies -- who have a mysterious flying penguin visitor named Sven (Hank Azaria) -- to come catch fish for the stranded Emperors. And just when it seems like all might be lost, help could come in a very unexpected form.

Is it any good?

Animation wise, HAPPY FEET TWO is a stunning achievement. The underwater sequences and the iceberg disaster are particularly impressive, but all of the animation is top notch. Director George Miller has also mastered the art of the elaborately choreographed animated musical number: The sequel seems to feature even more show-stopper performances (usually led by Pink) that the original, each of which was planned by a team of famous choreographers, including tap dancer Savion Glover (who's responsible for all of Mumble's moves thanks to motion-capture technology). 

Story wise, however, the movie is a bit cluttered with extra characters. Although it's a hoot to hear Brad Pitt and Matt Damon voice Will and Bill the krills -- who are separated from their swarm and wind up having existential crises about their purpose in the world -- there are just too many secondary characters detracting from the central storyline between Mumble and Eric. In particular, the flirtatious banter between Ramon and Carmen (Sofia Vergara) is forced and forgettable, and the audience doesn't have a chance to fully connect with Eric's young pals. Overall, the musical numbers and the 3-D animation are fantastic, but the actual story isn't as cohesive as the original's coming-of-age tale.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the movie's messages about independence and environmental awareness. How do Will the Krill and little Eric struggle with the same sort of issues? How do they each achieve their goal of uniqueness?

  • Why do some people think that everyone should conform and "fit in"? Has there ever been a time when you didn't feel like you fit in? How did that make you feel?

  • How does the sequel compare to the original? What are some similarities between Mumble's journey and Eric's? Which movie do you prefer?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

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Themes & Topics

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