Murder Mystery 2 delivers more of the same for fans

adam sandler, jennifer aniston, murder mystery 2
Is Murder Mystery 2 any good?NETFLIX - Netflix

2019’s comedy Murder Mystery was a smash hit for Netflix, so it came as no surprise a few months later that a sequel was in the works.

Four years and – of course – a pandemic later the follow-up is finally here, reuniting Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler as the married couple who dream of being private detectives.

Like the first movie, it doesn't exactly set the world on fire in terms of originality, but on the plus side it does feature Sandler at his least irritating, and Mark Strong delivering the kind of deliciously grumpy performance that Mark Strong delivers in every comedy actioner (Shazam!, the Kingsman movies, etc) he is cast in.

Murder Mystery 2 catches up with NY cop Nick and murder mystery novel-loving hairdresser Audrey after they have ditched their day jobs to try and make a living as professional sleuths (don't worry at this point if you haven't seen the first movie as the first few scenes will bring you up to speed).

murder mystery 2
NETFLIX - Netflix

They’re not very good at it, however, so when their old friend Vik (aka the Maharajah) invites them to his lavish Pacific island wedding, all expenses paid, they jump at the chance of a getaway.

No prizes for guessing what happens next – at the pre-wedding festivities Vik is kidnapped, and Nick and Audrey take it upon themselves to solve the crime.

There are a handful of suspects – including Jodie Turner-Smith as the Countess, and Inglourious Basterd’s Melanie Laurent as Vik’s fiancée – and the couple are joined in their sleuthing by stern ex-SAS man Connor Miller (Mark Strong), who arrives with his men to negotiate Vik’s return.

If you have watched a movie before – and we mean any movie, ever, not just a murder mystery one – you will have figured out whodunit well before Nick and Audrey do (in fact, you’ve probably guessed it from the summary above), but then this movie never pretends, or aspires, to be an Agatha Christie head-scratcher or even a twisty Knives Out puzzler.

adam sandler, jennifer aniston, murder mystery 2
NETFLIX - Netflix

As with the first movie, the formula here is star chemistry (Aniston and Sandler) and pretty locations (Hawaii doubles for Vik’s private island, then the action moves to Paris) mixed with an easy-on-the-brain plot, which adds up to form an inoffensive crime comedy that relies heavily on family appeal.

Of course, that means it all feels rather average – it’s not too sexy, it’s mildly amusing rather than a laugh riot, and despite a few shootings and fist fights, the camera always pulls away before any violent moments that could worry the censors (a shame, because a death-by-helicopter-blades scene here had the potential to be as memorable as the Raiders Of The Lost Ark plane one if the camera didn't cut away).

That doesn't mean Murder Mystery 2 isn't a fun diversion, however.

Aniston is charming throughout and gets some of the best moments – and a pretty cool stunt near the end – and there are enjoyable performances from Adeel Akhtar as Vik, Money Heist's Enrique Arce as Vik's lothario business partner, Dany Boon as a returning Inspector Delacroix and the aforementioned Mark Strong.

And while we could criticise it for being a simple, untaxing piece of fluff, that's actually what recommends it. It's one of those movies where you can sit back, relax and let it wash over you – and celebrate the daftness of it all while you do.

Murder Mystery 2 is now available to watch on Netflix.

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