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Official Discussion: Happy Death Day 2U [SPOILERS]

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Summary:

Tree Gelbman unexpectedly re-enters the time loop she suffered from last year and becomes determined to escape it after finding out Carter and her friends are now involved. When she discovers that Lori Spengler, the original killer has been murdered, Tree must face the new killer in order to uncover their identity and break free of the time loop, once and for all.

Director:

Christopher Landon

Writers:

screenplay by Christopher Landon

based on characters by Scott Lobdell

Cast:

  • Jessica Rothe as Theresa "Tree" Gelbman

  • Israel Broussard as Carter Davis

  • Phi Vu as Ryan Phan

  • Suraj Sharma as Samar Ghosh

  • Sarah Yarkin as Dre Morgan

  • Ruby Modine as Lori Spengler

  • Rachel Matthews as Danielle Bouseman

  • Steve Zissis as Dean Bronson


Rotten Tomatoes: 64%

Metacritic: 56/100

After Credits Scene? Yes


All previous official discussions can be found on /r/discussionarchive

514 comments
93% Upvoted
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level 1

I loved this movie for what it is: a lighthearted homage to Groundhog Day, with an amazing lead actress and with some funny moments interspersed in all the time looping chaos. I truly hope it does better on the box office so we can get a wrap-up with a third movie on some of the things that were left unsolved this time around.

level 1

I saw this on Saturday, so I’ve had some time to think about it. I really liked this movie. But it was completely mismarketed.

  1. Jessica Rothe carries this movie on her shoulders. She has so much range and the scene when she first sees her mom was really well acted by her. Honestly, I can’t say enough good things about this actress.

  2. At first I liked the explanation of how she got stuck in the loop, but the more I sit with it the more I’m not sure. What made the first movie so good was tree’s emotional growth. Her character development was pretty much flawless in the first movie imo. I’ll have to see how I feel about it.

  3. I do like that this focused a lot on the comedy. The montage was fantastic, and I thought it was a cool shoutout to Groundhog Day.

  4. I hope this movie performs better in the coming weeks. I’d really like to see them wrap the story up in a third movie, but it would take all of the actors signing on. Again Jessica Rothe is the key to these movies. She has such a bright career ahead of her.

level 2

Agree in pretty much all your points. At first i was kinda put off with all the comedy, but eventually grew to appreciate it and really liked to have sci-fi elements mixed with a bunch of laughs.

level 1
5 points · 1 day ago

Jessica Rothe was fantastic here, particularly at the dramatic scenes which could have gone horribly wrong. She is destined for bigger projects.

level 1

Probably the tamest jump the shark I have ever seen

level 1
6 points · 1 day ago · edited 1 day ago

Jessica Rothe totally carries this movie. Without her performance, this film would have been a piece of junk. Sans Rothe, everything that made the first film work was thrown out the window. The writing was worse, the supporting cast was OK, nothing special. The plot was convoluted and lazy. The comedy was too much. While Tree was winning in the first one, also OTHER elements worked too: suspense, horror, humor. Here, it was just a bunch of stuff thrown together and calling it a movie. Disappointing.

level 1
7 points · 1 day ago

Besides addressing what Carter was looking for under the desk, I also liked how they said “Why is our mascot a baby?”

level 1
2 points · 1 day ago

I didn't even know this was a sequel. I chuckled at parts but it really is an awful movie. I don't blame the actors. They were ok. More the bad script. The goodbye scene with the mother was unendurable melodrama. Jessica Rothe is gorgeous.

level 1

The blind scene with Danielle and the scene with NICK were absolutely gold.

level 1

I just saw this and i really hope we get third one that follows Danielle cause after that hilarious blind scene it made me realize that she needs her own movie.

level 1

I already made a post over at /r/horror. Thought I'd share my thoughts here as well. Warning: spoilers below.

The first film was a very pleasant surprise. I liked the mix of humour, horror and the self-awareness of the whole thing. It took a familiar narrative technique and did something original with it. And I thought the characters were entertaining, including the numerous stock university student characters. Just a real pleasure to watch.

Caught the sequel last weekend and I don't think it comes close to the first film. I enjoyed the experience and had a few solid laughs, but overall it was a bit forgettable.

I appreciate they tried something different with the style of the film. The decision to focus more on humour and move away from horror was a good one in my view, however the move into science fiction was something I didn't particularly care for. A lot of the brilliance of the first film comes from its simplicity – she's reliving the same day over and over and trying to stop it, with hilarious consequences. It eventually ends when she foils the housemate poison plot and doesn't die... There is no need for needless exposition – the narrative device is established and we just accept it and enjoy what can be done with it. Groundhog Day is excellent for a similar reason – Bill Murray's character is stuck reliving the same day over and over and eventually it ends after he changes as a person. It's pure fantasy and doesn't need to be explained. I found that 'explaining' the situation being caused by a machine was just that bit too far into corniness, particularly as it took up a lot of the film, and it took me out of just enjoying the situation for what it was. This exposition also resulted in a few plots holes. Lastly, I wasn't fond of the melodramatic 'emotional' scenes because they seemed a bit out of place. The first film did this to a degree, but i thought the subplot involving the mother was a bit jarring. It felt like the film was trying to do too many things stylistically.

Having said that, I did still enjoy it and some sequences were excellent (the numerous suicides while they conducted experiments for example). Fun film, and it goes without saying that I'd recommend it to anyone who enjoyed the first. More of the same stuff for the most part although it doesn't live up to the first film.

level 1

I hated the damn pseudo-science explanation. Should've stopped with the original philosophical one. Apparently some college student broke time with a few thousand dollars worth of parts? Damn, that was some lame YA shit.

Why would you pick such traumatic ways to kill yourself? For the lulz of the audience, right.

Oh, that solves that mystery. Right. Glad they also lampshaded the stupid baby mascot.

Vu is such a mediocre actor. I do like Sarah Yarkin. She's not Hollywood hot.

level 1

I really liked the original, so I was pretty pumped for this and I'm sad to see that it's been a disappointment at the box office. It lived up to my personal hype for the sequel and if they do make a third movie I'll be hyped for that, too.

What I liked: I liked that it wasn't just a repeat of the first one, and took more of a sci-fi twist to it. I'm a sucker for a good montage, and I loved the Tree killing herself montage. Jessica Rothe is awesome, I really hope she starts to get more roles going forward. I thought the emotional stuff in this movie worked well, I bought both that Tree would want to stay in the new dimension and that she would decide to go back to her own.

What I didn't like: There are some unanswered questions and things that don't really stand up to deeper thought. Also, Phi Vu isn't great as Ryan so the movie doesn't really pick up until Jessica Rothe takes over. The other lab kids don't really feel like characters, which I think hurts the movie a bit.

Minor nitpick: When you're picking ways to kill yourself, why in god's name would you choose drinking drain cleaner? There have to be literally hundreds of less painful ways than that.

Overall it's a 4/5 for me. I had a ton of fun with it, I thought it was funny but also hit the right emotional beats, and I guess I'm just a fan of this series. I didn't think this was quite as good as the first, but they play off of each other well.

level 1

We never found out where Killer-Ryan was from, or his motivations right? was that all just sequel bait? If so weird to have in the prologue to the main plot. Basically what he says has no consequence since the end of the movie shows they are still using the machine, despite the consequences he warned. We also never get a double version of another character, which again was a weird thing to introduce and set up and then never really explore it again, just alluding to it barely.

Outside of that whole setup enjoyed the movie! Kind of wish there was more of a mystery of whodunnit but by the final day we're basically down to Gregory or Danielle being the killer and when Danielle is shown helping the crew it basically soldifies Gregory as the killer since he didnt go help Lori when Tree told him to the last run. But that's just nitpicking!

level 1

So, I went in seeing the 55-60 scores and wasn’t expecting much. Solid 70-80 for me. I really enjoyed it, after being a huge fan of the 1st one. I liked the idea of it sliding into sci-fi but still retaining the character development of Tree. Are there plot holes? Yeah, a few, but it didn’t take away from the fact that Jessica Roth is fantastic! There are points where I had questions, but I’m not too concerned, as I believe the movie accomplished what it wanted. It was fun, and that’s exactly what it was for.

level 1
11 points · 3 days ago

So... if the boyfriend’s new gf was cheating on her in the new dimension, why can’t she have kept the mom and then just told the guy so he breaks up with the other girl? It seemed like he had feelings for her regardless of the reality.

level 2
11 points · 2 days ago

Well let's face it. Despite being the main theme of the movie you should never pick the boyfriend you've been dating for a month over one of your parents being alive.

level 3

She flat out says it, its not her mom. She doesnt have any of the memories that the mom brings up.

level 4

Yea, basically, if she stayed in that dimension, its no different than her stealing that dimension's Tree's life. Although they could have totally set up a sequel where another dimension's Tree want to steal Tree's current life

level 2

I agree, and thought that was a cheap takedown of that character for no reason. It could have been cut with no issue, especially since its never addressed again.

level 2
6 points · 3 days ago

I think its because while she does have her mom and coul easily get her boyfriend back, she realizes that this life isnt hers. She doesnt have any memories of her time with her mom.

level 3
3 points · 2 days ago

Was talking about this with my wife and as someone with a dead parent, I couldn't give less of a shit about not having memories than the potential to have more time together. Especially if everything else stays basically the same and it was clear she'd still end up with Carter in that timeline.

level 4
1 point · 2 days ago

While I dont have that said perspective I still think that was the point. She wanted so bad to get more time with her mom and while she got that life wansnt the one she was meant to be living. You see her go through that in the movie and come to terms with accepting that.

While Im sure everyone would trade anything to get more time with someones weve lost I dont think well every really know what were willing to do or give up in the process.

I think for her she was able to come to terms with it because while alot of the stuff in that timeline was the same alot was also different. At the end she did wnd up more time with her mom and was also ablw to say goodbye and continue the life she was meant to live.

I would cite the speech/advice her mom gave but sadly a baby watching a YouTube video in the theater started crying.

level 1
2 points · 3 days ago · edited 2 days ago

This film severely lacked tension because it utterly failed to raise the stakes.

A rule is established that Tree gets weaker every time she "dies" but we never get a real sense of how much damage it is doing to her throughout the film. "I don't know how many (chances) I have left" she says. Neither do we. But she clearly has enough lives to enjoy a comedic montage full of ridiculous deaths including one where she jumps off a plane in a bikini. Each of these deaths should make the audience feel like Tree cannot afford to lose another one, but instead they make us laugh, and render the source of dramatic tension useless.

Only in the climax is it brought up that she may not be able to afford another death, because the film needs the audience to feel tense now. However, this is a 180 turn to how the film portrayed her deaths earlier, and there is no build-up to create this climactic suspense.

In the first film, it is revealed that Tree retains the physical damage and injuries caused from her "deaths." So why would she jump off a plane as opposed to cutting her wrists or choking herself to minimize her injuries? I understand the montage created a comedic, over-the-top tone for the movie, but it also sacrificed the dramatic tension the movie desperately needed.

Once again, I'm of the opinion the Groundhog Day formula is not compatible with the horror genre, because the threat of death is minimized with the seemingly-infinite number of lives the character has. While this franchise tried to combat that problem with the "injuries being retained" rule, it did not work and they shot themselves in the foot.

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