MGM // 2003 // 94 Minutes // Rated PG-13
Reviewed by Judge Franck Tabouring (Retired) // May 12th, 2011
Bigger. Bolder. Blonder.
Let's be honest here: Legally Blonde never ever needed a sequel. Watching Elle Woods do her thing was entertaining for only so long, and quite frankly, the first film reached a satisfying conclusion. Nonetheless, the success of the flick quickly convinced producers to return for Round Two, so Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde was born. For those who can't resist watching Reese Witherspoon wear pink in high definition, the sequel is now finally available on Blu-ray.
Yes, Elle Woods looks even more like a Barbie doll in this second installment directed by Charles Herman-Wurmfeld. Now that she's done with law school, Elle is finally ready to change the world, and her first order of business is to free her chihuahua Bruiser's mother from one of those terrible animal testing facilities. Oh, and while she's at it, she heads straight to Washington to try and pass a bill that would ban animal testing all together. Talk about being proactive...
While the first Legally Blonde backed its incredibly silly storyline with a solid dose of light humor, harmless, fast-paced entertainment and fun performances; the same thing can certainly not be said about the sequel. On the contrary, Red, White & Blonde misses the mark on many levels, starting with an atrocious plot that couldn't be less compelling. Sure, power to the puppies and all, but focusing an entire script around getting a dog out of a testing joint simply isn't going to cut it. It's downright boring.
Legally Blonde 2 feels empty, rushed, and unnecessary. Elle Woods doesn't really grow as a character, her behavior is now more annoying than cute or refreshing, and she clearly doesn't bring anything new to the table except for a new, exaggerated pink glow that seems to follow her around like a shadow. Yes, this is a story about an eccentric individual who proves that ambition and determination matter more than looks and unique lifestyles. Yes, we understand that Elle Woods wants to prove to the world that even a real-life Barbie can make an impact. Where's the fun in all this?
Witherspoon's performance has not changed much, and that's totally fine. Sadly enough, screenwriter Kate Kondell doesn't give her anything remotely hilarious to work with, which means we're left with an Elle we know and don't really care that much about anymore. After all, she's barely challenged in her quest to win over Washington. The supporting cast includes performances by Sally Fields and Regina King, who play two superficial characters lacking the ability to leave any impact. It's a dire situation, folks.
There is a lot of pink to see in this movie, and in high-definition, it actually looks pretty good. It gets annoying pretty fast, but the 1.85:1 widescreen transfer this disc is equipped with boasts fabulous colors and a clean, sharp image quality throughout. In the sound department, this DVD comes with a superb 5.1 DTS-HD Master audio transfer that adequately balances soundtrack and dialogue. No complaints in terms of technical aspects.
Diehard fans of Elle Woods and her lavish adventures will also be busy exploring the special features. Besides a bunch of deleted scenes, a silly gag reel, a music video, and an audio commentary; the bonus material also includes six featurettes that offer viewers a look behind the scenes of the sequel. Telling you that all these pieces are great would be a lie, but those infatuated with Elle's lifestyle will get a kick out of watching them.
I cannot say this often enough, but I simply believe not many people out there really needed or wanted Legally Blonde 2: Red, White & Blonde. Although certainly harmless, this sequel is devoid of hilarity and emotions. Despite Witherspoon's efforts, it simply fails to leave a mark. Elle Woods should have been left alone after her first adventure. It's as simple as that.
Pink and guilty.
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Scales of Justice
* 1.85:1 Non-Anamorphic (1080p)
* DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio (English)
* DTS 5.1 Surround (French)
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (Spanish)
* English (SDH)
Running Time: 94 Minutes
Release Year: 2003
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13
* Deleted Scenes
* Gag Reel
* Music Video