Smurfette (Katy Perry) was originally created by Gargamel (Hank Azaria) as a “Meanie” to use as a tool to help trap the Smurfs. Papa Smurf (Jonathan Winters) created a potion that turned her into a real Smurf.
Of course, Gargamel created more than one Meanie. Vexy (Christina Ricci) is desperate to earn Gargamel’s love and approval. Hackus (J.B. Smoove) is your typical less than clever Meanie, who just goes along with whatever he is told to do.
Gargamel is now a world-famous magician, using his Smurf essence as part of his act. He is now set on taking over the human world. With his Smurf essence supply running low, he develops a plan. He will capture his “long-lost daughter,” Smurfette, and get the recipe for Papa Smurf’s magic potion. He will create an army of Meanies, use the potion to turn them into real Smurfs to harvest their Smurf essence.
Once Smurfette is captured, Papa, Vanity (John Oliver), Grouchy (George Lopez) and Clumsy (Anton Yelchin) head to the human world to rescue her. It wasn’t exactly the elite team Papa was planning to take, but when Smurf happens, you just have to Smurf with it. Of course, they get the help of Patrick (Neil Patrick Harris) and Grace (Jayma Mays). Patrick’s stepfather, Victor (Brendan Gleeson) is along for the ride this time. He’s a bumbling, oafish guy who, in Patrick’s eyes, ruins everything he gets near. The team must stop Gargamel before it’s too late. And they all learn a little about real family along the way.
Where The Smurfs was a lot of back story, The Smurfs 2 is able to skip all the back story and get right into the CGI action. Except where they include back story. The back story that’s included in this episode, however, is the little known story of how Smurfette came to be, and gives an explanation as to why she is the only girl Smurf. (However, it doesn’t explain how the Smurfs actually came into being or continue to exist as a species with no real female Smurf in their history.) The fact that they are able to move directly to the actual story makes the second film more enjoyable than the first.
NPH and Brendan Gleeson make for a decent live-action comedy team paired with their CGI counterparts. There are plenty of laughs to be had, even if some of the jokes are obvious and easy targets. It’s a kid’s movie, remember, so the jokes have to be on the level of the audience.
If you’re looking for a movie to take the family to, The Smurfs 2 is a pretty good pick. It’s entertaining enough for everyone to enjoy, from 4 years old to 13 years old, even the adults. (Of course, it could be due in part to the fact that just about everything NPH touches turns to gold.) Plus, as with anything the Smurfs do, there’s a nice, family message strewn throughout.