Film review: Ted 2 – The bear is back!

The success of Ted was completely unexpected. I doubt even director Seth McFarlane knew just how popular it would go on to become.

From special DVD’s to limited edition cuddly (or not so cuddly) toys, Ted has become something of a phenomenon. A sequel was always going to be on the cards and after three years perfecting it, McFarlane returns with Ted 2. But is it as funny as its predecessor?

Ted 2 follows the titular bear as he embarks on a relationship with Tami-Lynn and continues his friendship with John, the ever-watchable Mark Wahlberg in another great performance.

Screenshot: Universal Pictures

Screenshot: Universal Pictures

Unfortunately for Ted, his rights have been challenged by the US government and he must fight to be recognised as a ‘person’, rather than just someone’s ‘property’.

What ensues is a film which whilst being as funny as its predecessor, manages to be somewhat disappointing with a serious shortage of plot. This becomes evident as McFarlane uses Family Guy-esque cut-scenes and incredibly long dance numbers.

The cast, on the whole, is fantastic. Amanda Seyfried takes over from Mila Kunis as John’s love interest and Ted’s lawyer, Samantha. As usual she is a joy to watch but her inexperience in the offensive comedy genre is evident – scenes of her taking drugs just don’t sit right.

Morgan Freeman is sorely underused as a civil rights attorney, though a quick reference to his silky-smooth voice is more than welcome. Giovanni Ribisi also makes a surprising and pleasing return as Ted’s nemesis Donny.

An absolutely brilliant cameo from Liam Neeson is one of the highlights in a film packed with gags that generally hit the spot – but they’re certainly not for the faint-hearted.

Ted 2 is louder, more obnoxious and much more offensive than its predecessor with numerous scenes involving sperm banks and an endless supply of drug-related comedy.

Unfortunately, all these highs are brought crashing back down to Earth as the story continuously runs out of steam and picks up again. It’s such a shame that a film less than two hours long has such a problem in fashioning a story that lasts the duration.

Thankfully, the original Ted wasn’t a masterpiece and MacFarlane manages to shoot the film well with a real eye for the finer details. His love of movies is apparent with Star Wars references being used well.

Overall, Ted 2 is very close to the standard of its predecessor, despite the excess story-padding that occurs throughout the film. The comedic elements are cracking with Liam Neeson’s cameo being a genuine laugh-out-loud moment – it’s worth a watch, but only if you’re a fan of the first.

Ted 2 Rating: 6/10