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Murder Mystery 2 is an absolute downgrade from its original. Whereas it's original film was a surprisingly good time that had a good interesting story and some well landed jokes- all of that goes out the window in the sequel. There's a handful of actors with recognizable names that play brand new characters within the sequel, and yet none of them feel fleshed out, funny, or interesting enough to make the movie work any better. The murder mystery genre has had so many steps forward the past few years and has become one of my favorite genres as each new release does it's own thing to stand out from the pack, so having this sequel release really just felt like a step back for the genre.

Now private detectives launching their own agency, Nick (Adam Sandler) and Audrey Spitz (Jennifer Aniston) land at the centre of an international investigation when a friend is abducted.

On a story basis, it falls flat almost immediately. We get multiple "shitz" jokes right off the bat and you know instantly what tier of Happy Madison movie that were in store for. The new characters and the Maharajah's abduction are rushed so much that we don't get time to understand motifs or really settle into the movie, before it rushes forward. There's really no time for the mystery around the abduction to form because we don't know these characters and we're never given a moment to ever really care about them or guess fully on what the reasoning for their actions may be.

Ontop of the clearly storyline issues, the movie just throws out endless joke attempts for every character hoping desperately that they'll land. Don't get me wrong, there's a few that did have me smirk or make a small chuckle- but almost all of those came from Sandler or Aniston. If it weren't for the two of them with the occasional funny joke, this could've been one of the least funny comedies I've seen in a long time. It's something that I can't wrap my brain around, you get a cast with Mélanie Laurent, Jodie Turner-Smith, and Mark Strong joining it- and you really don't give them anything to do other than be painstakingly unfunny.

Unfortunately, Murder Mystery 2 is a sequel that just didn't have to exist. It's first one may have been a surprisingly fun time, but new director Jeremy Garelick is unable to steer the ship in that direction once again. Instead we get an uninteresting addition to the murder mystery genre, that tries too hard to catch lightning in a bottle twice. Sandler and Aniston do their best, they have great chemistry we already knew that- and they do provide much needed energy to the movie- but the lack of character development elsewhere and the lack of an actual mystery just led for this to be an uninteresting watch.


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