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Featured DVD Review: Teen Beach 2

July 5th, 2015

Teen Beach 2 - Buy from Amazon: DVD

Teen Beach 2

Before we get started, I should point out that I've never seen Teen Beach Movie, but it did earn amazing reviews. So when I got a chance to review Teen Beach 2, I jumped at it. Is it as good as the first film's reviews would suggest? Or was making a sequel a mistake?

The Movie

As I've said, I have not seen Teen Beach Movie, but I did read the Wikipedia entry to get caught up on the characters. That movie focuses on two high school students, Mack and Brady, who never met, even though they go to the same school. They first meet when Mack tries to surf a 40-foot wave and Brady tries to go to to save her. Instead, they end up being sucked into a whirlpool and transported to Wet Side Story, which is Mack's favorite movie. There, the pair accidentally interfere with plot of the movie by accidentally getting the two stars, Tanner and Lela, to fall in love with them. Mack and Brady have to get Lela and Tanner to fall in love with each in order to repair the plot of the movie. In the meantime, they fall in love as well.

At the beginning of Teen Beach 2, Mack and Brady are celebrating the last day of summer together. (In the celebrating, Mack loses the necklace Lela gave her.) Brady is a little worried that when school starts they will fall into their old habits and drift apart. There is a sign he's right. Brady tells his friend, Devon, he met a girl, Devon assumes she's a chill surfer type. Mack is neither. In fact, she and Alyssa, Mack's best friend, are both Type-A super academic types. Mack has a ton of extracurricular activities that keep her busy, and in close proximity to Spenser, who is another type-A personality and the boy Alyssa has a massive crush on. However, when Mack and Spenser spend time together because of their related clubs, Brady gets jealous. And when Brady tries to work on his surfboard invention (which he does without telling Mack) and misses picking her up from school, the pair get into a fight and break up.

We also see the world of Wet Side Story and we see moments with Lela breaking the script. First wanting to go with Tanner while he surfs and second stopping the song when they fell in love. Lela's interactions with Mack changed her and she doesn't want to relive the same movie over and over again. When she goes to the beach, she sees the necklace she gave Mack and decides this is a sign. She has to to into the ocean and go to Mack. Tanner hesitantly follows her. Shortly after that, the pair pop out of the ocean and into the "real" world.

At first they are so excited about being in the real world, they break out into song. (The movie is a musical, so that's not that shocking.) However, Mack and Brady quickly realize something isn't right. Lela and Tanner still obey movie logic; for example, their hair never gets wet. Mack then remembers when they broke the plot in the movie, they almost vanished. She figures if they don't get Lela and Tanner back to Wet Side Story, Lela and Tanner will vanish. It's worse than that. We see that in Wet Side Story the plot has stopped and even though CheeChee tries to jump start it with a song, things are falling apart and the background characters start to disappear.

While I'm not in the target audience for Teen Beach 2, I had a lot more fun watching the movie than I thought I would. It is cheesy in a teen / tween movie way, but the characters are fun and there's plenty of energy. I also really liked the Movie / Reality Crossover idea, which is treated almost like a time travel story with the potential of changing timelines, for lack of a better term. It's overly complicated for a simple musical / comedy, but if you are going to include elements like this in a film for teens, overdoing it is better than taking it too seriously. Additionally, I really liked the character growth Lela goes through and how that changes the movie from Wet Side Story to Lela, Queen of the Beach. Granted, this does result in pretty much everything that happened in the two movies getting undone, but the final dance number gives us a happy ending for both the movie and the real worlds.

The Extras

The only extra on the DVD is a six-minute behind-the-scenes / dance rehearsal featurette. The package also contains a replica of the necklace Lela gave Mack.

The Verdict

Teen Beach 2 came out on DVD just a few days after it first aired on TV. Its ratings were not as good as Teen Beach Movie's were, but I enjoyed it more than I thought I would. There are few extras on the DVD, but if you own the first movie, then this one is also worth picking up.

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Filed under: Video Review, Teen Beach Movie 2, Grace Phipps, Chrissie Fit, Maia Mitchell, Ross Lynch, Garrett Clayton, Raymond Alexander Cham Jr., Piper Curda, Ross Butler