+ high-res version

Watched: 11 February

Paul King’s Paddington sequel expands on the rather lovely first film, revisiting certain locations and characters while also finding the time for an entertaining prison-set sequence, a terrific train-based finale and some sweet pop-up book-style stop-motion animation – the latter a lovely and cleverly-incorporated homage to the BBC/FilmFair Paddington TV series of the 1970s. There are several funny comic moments, some wonderfully over-the-top performances (Hugh Grant as a villainous luvvie, Brendan Gleeson as a tough prison chef) and it’s worth saying once more that Ben Whishaw is perfectly cast as the titular Peruvian bear. There’s just a hell of a lot to like, to be honest, and watching it in a cinema full of chuckling, excited children on a Sunday morning was a real treat. (****)