Paddington 2 (2017)

I’m the biggest fan of Paddington Bear anywhere in the world. And that’s a fucking fact.

When I was two years old, my mum and dad bought me a ‘life-size’ Paddy, complete with the hat, duffle coat and Wellington boots. I was small enough to be able to take all that shit off and wear it round the house. There are still pictures of me rocking the Paddy look like a boss.

I’m now approaching 40 – and I sleep every night with a smaller Paddy on my bedside table*.

Now that you can be assured that this review will be 100% unbiased as fuck, let’s get this show on the road.

First of all, the 2014 film that was the first in this series was a triumph on all fronts. Anyone who didn’t fall in love with wee Paddy in that film is fucking dead inside. Add Peter Capaldi, Nicole Kidman, Hugh Bonneville and the heartwarmingly charming Sally Hawkins to the mix and it was always going to be a winner.

How then could the team behind the Paddy franchise improve on that impeccable debut? Send the hairy little bastard to jail, of course, and set him on a path of redemption, righteousness and downright hilarity.

Peter Capaldi is back, as are all of the Brown family and many of the other cast from the first film. But this time we have the utterly brilliant duo of Brendan Gleeson and Hugh Grant on board – and both of them put in performances that no words could come close to capturing. Gleeson is outstanding as Knuckles (Nuckle’s) McGinty and Grant is Oscar-worthy in the devilishly funny role of horrible bugger Phoenix Buchanan.

Marmalade sandwiches, ill-advised high jinks and belly laughs are the order of the day, as you would expect, but if you don’t shed a tear at the end then you probably need to see a doctor.

And once the credits start to roll, don’t go anywhere. Hugh Grant steals the show with an unexpected final fling that you absolutely don’t want to miss.

Got kids? Sure, they will love this film. But fuck that – get a babysitter and enjoy this shit without the annoying questions and incessant munching of sweets.

Utter, utter genius. 10/10.


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