Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising (2016)
Starring: Seth Rogen, Zac Efron, Rose Byrne
I enjoyed Neighbors (2014), it was a raunchy comedy, but it made me chuckle out loud and I love when movies do that. It had some great one-liners, a couple nice running jokes. Zac Efron really shined, Seth Rogen and Rose Byrne were awesome. So when I heard they were making a second one, I was willing to see what would come of it, but I was hesitant (Because… sequels.) I enjoyed the trailers, figured I’d go and have a good time with Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising. I was not disappointed.
This sequel is about a group of girls who want to break down the established law that the Greek council based sororities are not allowed to have parties, but frats are. (This was a recurring statement in the film. Clearly trying to right a wrong with that.) Meanwhile, Mac and Kelly (Rogen and Byrne) are trying to sell their home and move into a bigger one because of an expanding family. The trouble is, who will buy a home next a noisy sorority? They have to find a way to get this sorority out before it ruins everything.
What I Didn’t Like
This film was funny, but sometimes it used jokes and practical gags from the first movie. Again, it was funny, but not original. In fact, the whole premise to the movie isn’t very original. I knew it going in, I expected it, but sometimes it was too much for my taste. There are also a few times where things could have been settled legally. Instead, the characters (Especially Byrne and Rogen) took a longer, more difficult road. Things can sometimes have simple solutions. They of course took the hard road for comedy sake, but I couldn’t accept it. (It was just too stupid.) The film clearly had this sorority vs frat theme throughout. I get it, Sororities can’t party like frats. Of course they should be allowed to. That idea is archaic and needs to be thrown out. I like that this film brought that to my attention. However, they repeated way too much for my liking. You told me, I don’t need to hear it six more times before the end of the movie.
What I Did Like
This film is much like the first one. It has a lot of solid one-liners. Definitely a few very raunchy parts (though I’ve seen worse). The characters, particularly the older crew (including Efron because I guess he counts for “old” now) are very likable. There is a couple priceless cameos in this film.
I like how the older crew in this movie are dealing with real life situations and the many irritating annoyances that come with that. Efron plays his character so well. He is a guy who is still dealing with the consequences of his actions in the previous film and the fact that college is over. That can be a hard adjustment if you are a frat leader like him. I enjoyed seeing that aspect of the film, it brought some real themes into a otherwise very funny film. The film also has a positive message about friendship both in youth, but also adulthood.
Meanwhile, these barely legal women want to have a wild sorority. They wanted to break down the established gender barriers and you can kind of support that. Their actions less so, but the ideas I can get behind.
It is time to accept that Zac Efron and Seth Rogen work great together. They have good chemistry and both know how to put together good comedic sequences. Also, Rose Byrne. She is quite talented in a serious role, but she can be a riot in a comedy as well.
In the end, Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising is a decent comedy. The script may be a bit unoriginal, but the talented cast makes it work. I laughed throughout this whole film and I’d be happy to one day see it again. Definitely among the funniest films of 2016 so far (though that’s not saying much),
I know it’s been out for a few weeks, but if you enjoyed the 2014 original. I recommend checking this one as well in theaters. Perhaps, a matinee if you can, or if not then, stream/rent it.
Where this ranks on the Rogen and OR Efron movie list.
This is the End (2013)
The Night Before (2015)
Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising (2016)
17 Again (2009)
That Awkward Moment (2014)
Dirty Grandpa (2016)
The Guilt Trip (2012)
The Green Hornet (2011)