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Newlywed couple Ted and Tami-Lynn want to have a baby, but in order to qualify to be a parent, Ted will have to prove he's a person in a court of law.

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Ted 2 movie full length review - A Handful of Funny Moments but Retreads Old Ground

I am an unabashed Seth MacFarlane fan. I loved the first TED in 2012 and I even, for whatever reason, enjoyed A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST way more than most people would think acceptable.

But that doesn't stop me from recognizing that maybe, just maybe, TED 2 never needed to happen. And when I discovered it was happening, I'd hoped MacFarlane and his writing team would come up with a fun new reason to rejoin the adventures of John Bennett (Mark Wahlberg) and his plus pal Ted (voiced by MacFarlane). It certainly appears so at first but then it isn't long before it devolves into rehashed elements from the first film. We rejoin them as Ted and his girlfriend Tami-Lynn (Jessica Barth) are tying the knot in a ceremony overseen, of course, by Flash Gordon himself, Sam Jones. We flash forward a year and see that married life isn't going so well for the lovebirds, and Ted is given the idea that having a child will rejuvenate their marriage. Seeing as how he's a stuffed bear, the usual means of procreation are out of the question and, after a series of misadventures, he and Tami-Lynn turn to adoption. Here's where Ted's life begins to fall apart; his adoption attempt red flags him with the government whose official stance is that Ted is not a person, but "property". TED 2 is the tale of John and Ted teaming with a young, stoned upstart lawyer (Amanda Seyfried) in an attempt to battle the court system and award Ted personhood.

TED 2 has some stuff that works. I love that a portion of the film becomes a road movie with John, Ted, and Seyfried's Sam L. Jackson driving from Boston to New York to meet with a famed civil rights lawyer (Morgan Freeman) in hopes that he'll take Ted's case. That whole segment of the film works for me and I kind of wished the whole movie had been one big crazy road movie. I also enjoyed the BREAKFAST CLUB homage/montage in the library when the trio are preparing to first argue Ted's case. I loved the usual string of pop culture gags and raunchy humor we expect from MacFarlane, and I loved the chemistry between Wahlberg, Seyfriend, and Ted. Seyfried was a treat in MILLION WAYS TO DIE but MacFarlane upgrades her to co- star this time around and, as with Theron in the former movie it's great how game she is to sink to the levels of humor these movies call for. Since MacFarlane is a self- professed geek, we also get some great cameos that'll make Star Trek fans grin, especially Michael Dorn (Lieutenant Worf from "Next Generation"/"Deep Space Nine" for those not in the know) as Patrick Warburton's lover. The problem is when MacFarlane's geekiness gets a little out of hand in the final act of the film, set entirely in New York ComiCon where it's as if someone broke the valve off his pop culture love and it just starts spewing uncontrollably all over the place. It becomes a literal battle royale of beloved pop culture icons.

That over-indulgence I could've forgiven if the rest of the movie hadn't tripped over itself and face-planted. I have two grievances with TED 2. The first is the rehashing of plot lines from the first TED. It's annoying enough that we have to go through an entire new romantic subplot for John and Sam (John has married and divorced Mila Kunis' Lori in the time since the last film, rendering the plot of that movie pointless) but TED 2 also brings back Donnie, as played by Giovanni Ribisi. I really liked Ribisi in the first movie. The man knows how to play awkward and creepy, and Donnie's obsessive quest to acquire Ted for his own son was both. In TED 2, Donnie now works for Hasbro and conspires with the CEO to steal Ted (who is now property, so it wouldn't be kidnapping) and cut him open to see what makes him sentient. Did we need to revisit Donnie's unhealthy obsession with stealing Ted? Couldn't we have found a new antagonist for the movie? Maybe the toy company itself with the CEO leading the charge? Again, it would've been nice to change things up a bit. My other big mark against TED 2 is how seriously it takes the human rights issue at the center of it all. We get not one, but two overly serious lawyer speeches in front of juries explaining how Ted is more "human" than toy. Guys, this is a movie where a stuffed bear tries to steal Tom Brady's semen. Keep it light. Overall, TED 2 feels aimless like it just doesn't know where it wants to focus its energy, and the constant borrowing from the first film's playbook makes me think TED 2 could've spent a little more time in the planning stages to bring us a fun new (emphasis on "new") Thunder Buddy adventure instead of what we got.