Pilot News Movie Review: Smurf 2 is family-friendly

PLYMOUTH - Growing up, I enjoyed watching the Smurfs on television. Face it, at 19, I am still a fan and this week's release of The Smurfs 2 did not disappoint the fan in me.

The movie showing at the Tri-Way Drive In Movie Theater, opened Wednesday night. And, as all movies like this should, it delivered an important message — that you can choose who the kind of person you really want to be. With themes like family and fitting in, there are plenty of wholesome messages in the movie.

In this movie, the Smurf's human friend played by Neil Patrick Harris, a personal favorite of mine, helps save the day and learns important lessons along the way in this blended animation and live action film. But nothing in Smurfdom is done alone, and the gang of little blue citizens helps rescue Smurfette, voiced by Katy Perry, from the hands of the evil Gargumel.

There are plenty of puns, some cinematic climaxes and loveable characters throughout the movie. My favorite is Azrael, Gargamel's cat. But Smurfette is also a favorite because in this movie her struggles with acceptance are part of the focus.

She is kidnapped by Gargumel's creations, the Naughties, so the evil wizard can learn how to obtain "Smurf-essence." But, she need not worry about whether her community of Smurfs care about her, because they are on their way to save her.

This is a film that the whole family will enjoy. A positive message for children wrapped around humorous dialogue is a winning combination.

This film is rated PG and is 1 hour and 45 minutes in length. It is brought to the screen by Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Animation and is a sequel to The Smurfs, released in 2011. Many of the same actors returned to provide the voices in the latest release.