Trolls Band Together

Review by Rich Cline | 3.5/5

Trolls Band Together
dir Walt Dohrn
scr Elizabeth Tippet
prd Gina Shay
voices Anna Kendrick, Justin Timberlake, Eric Andre, Daveed Diggs, Kid Cudi, Troye Sivan, Camila Cabello, Amy Schumer, Andrew Rannells, Zooey Deschanel, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Kenan Thompson
release UK 20.Oct.23,
US 17.Nov.23
23/US DreamWorks 1h32

kendrick timberlake andre
See also:
Trolls 2016 Trolls World Tour 2020

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Trolls Band Together
With even more glitter, this high-energy sequel is an almost mind-boggling flurry of colour, music, comedy and action mayhem. The boy band premise provides music industry in-jokes from cheesy 1990s choreography to influencers who want fame without hard work. It's a bit too chaotic and crowded, but it's gorgeously animated and riotously entertaining. And it has some nice things to say about the push and pull of families.
When BroZone star John Dory (Andre) turns up, Poppy (Kendrick) is shocked to discover that Branch (Timberlake) was the baby member of the iconic group, which split acrimoniously years ago. Now brother Floyd (Sivan) has been kidnapped and is having his talent stolen by hot duo Velvet & Veneer (Schumer and Rannells). So Branch and pals set out to find brothers Spruce (Diggs) and Clay (Cudi), reassemble the band and rescue Floyd. Along this epic journey to Mount Rageous, they're accompanied by Tiny Diamond (Thompson), and they meet Viva (Cabello), who has an unexpected connection.
All of this kicks off at the rainbow-hued, music-filled wedding of bergens Bridget and Gristle (Deschanel and Mintz-Plasse), whose amusing honeymoon is shown in cutaways before it converges with the main plot. Everything rockets forward at a breakneck pace, with new creatures and environments, mashup medleys and wildly crazy action beats. There isn't a dull moment, even in more emotional scenes that play with the general estranged siblings theme. The film's hyperactivity is adeptly channeled to keep the momentum moving forward and the focus on the characters.

And there are a lot of new characters, helpfully colour-coded to assist in keeping track of who's whom. Each has a distinct personality that has surprising complexities as they're forced to recognise how people change as they grow up. The lively voice cast adds goofy attitude that keeps the interaction sparky and messy, with throwaway zingers scattered throughout the dialog. These more sophisticated jokes help keep adults giggling against their will. And the imagery is a stunning array of tactile colours and textures.

Iconic pop songs and new original tunes are thrown sometimes carelessly into the mix, mainly in snippets and occasionally in bigger moments that can resonate. But nothing here sits still for long, as the basic plot is kept humming in the background, resolving quickly to allow for more musical silliness. There are enough pointed gags that the movie feels like it's about something, and the central message is solid and never pushed too forcefully. It's a rare movie that leaves everyone smiling.

cert u themes, , innuendo 15.Oct.23

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© 2023 by Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall