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Phil Traill
Kenan Thompson, Kel Mitchell, Kamaia Fairburn
Writing Credits:
Kevin Kopelow, Heath Seifert

After his latest invention fails, Dex is welcomed back by Ed to his old job at Good Burger, which is once again put in jeopardy when Dex devises a plan to get back on his feet.

Rated TV-PG.

Aspect Ratio: 2.00:1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 90 min.
Price: $29.98
Release Date: 3/26/2024

• Blooper Reel
• “The Comfort Food Classic” Featurette
• “Behind the Scenes with Kenan and Kel” Featurette
• “Meat the Employees” Featurette
• “Q&A with the New Crew” Featurette
• “Employee Training Video”
Good Burger Movie Recap


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Good Burger 2 [Blu-Ray] (2023)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (March 7, 2024)

Spun off from the Nickelodeon sketch comedy series Kenan and Kel, 1997’s Good Burger didn’t exactly soar at the box office. Its US gross of $23 million plopped it in 85th place for the year.

Nonetheless, the film built a following among youthful fans – and also earned a lot of mockery from film buffs. Apparently the former faction won in the end, as 2023 finally brought a sequel via Good Burger 2.

Now middle-aged, former Good Burger employee Dexter Reed (Kenan Thompson) pursues a life as an entrepreneur. However, his fireproofing invention fails miserably and ultimately leave him broke and homeless.

Dex’s old co-worker and pal Ed (Kel Mitchell) gives Dex a place to stay as well as his old job. Back at Good Burger, Dex tries to shake up the joint and get his life back into shape, all with potentially calamitous results.

As noted when I reviewed the first film, my age left me much older than the average Good Burger fan in 1997. This meant I never saw the movie until I got around to the Blu-ray in 2022.

I found Good Burger to offer a pretty terrible movie, though I reflected I didn’t exist as part of its target audience in 1997, much less 25 years later. I don’t think this excused its flaws, but I did recognize that my disconnect from the movie’s intended viewership impacted my enjoyment of it.

Going into Burger 2, I found this topic tougher to define, mainly because I don’t quite know what the target audience for Burger 2 is. Does it want to shoot for a new crop of pre-teens like the original or does it seek fans of the TV show/1997 flick – or maybe both?

I assume “both”, though I also suspect Burger 2 desires to bring back those who loved the original. As such, I think it becomes fair to view it through the eyes of an adult and lose the asterisks attached to the fact the 1997 flick shot for an adolescent crowd.

And in that realm, it flops – well, mostly. Though not totally devoid of entertainment value and clearly superior to the pretty awful 1997 movie, Burger 2 never turns into anything creative or memorable.

Arguably the biggest improvement here comes from Thompson. As a teen back in 1997, he overacted and actively harmed whatever comedic potential came with his role – which wasn’t much, but still.

26 years later and with years of Saturday Night Live and other roles under his belt, Thompson proves substantially stronger as Dex in Burger 2. Thompson shows the comedic timing and awareness utterly absent from the 1997 film and almost churns amusement from the material.

Unfortunately for Thompson, Dex exists more as a straight man than as the creator of laughs. The film gives Thompson little to do other than react to the insanity created by Ed and the other goofy characters.

Whereas Thompson delivers clearly superior skills at 45 than at 19, the older Mitchell demonstrates less growth. That said, given the nature of his role, this becomes less a judgment of Mitchell’s development than a critique of the one-dimensional Ed.

Ed exists as a weird man-child, essentially Pee-wee Herman but dumber and more naïve. Indeed, a lot of Burger 2 seems to want to pull off the crazed energy and warped POV of 1985’s Pee-wee’s Big Adventure.

This doesn’t go anywhere, mainly because those involved lack the talent of Tim Burton and company, but also because Burger 2 never quite settles on what it wants to be. The plot essentially recycles the story to the 1997 movie, and it winds up as an awkward mix of family drama, childish shenanigans and ironic weirdness.

Dex seemed oddly unsympathetic in the first film and that problematic choice continues here, as he cares way more about money and success than anything else. Dex knows Ed only wants to stay in his simple Good Burger life but he acts to sabotage that for his own ends.

Of course, Dex finds redemption eventually, and due to Thompson’s improved abilities, he seems more likable than the caustic jerk of 1997. Still, a Burger 2 that doesn’t once again rely on Dex’s selfishness would’ve worked better.

I’d also like a Burger 2 that didn’t count on a slew of celebrity cameos to maintain audience involvement. I won’t list all the guests, as that’d spoil potential fun.

It’d also take me about two weeks, as Burger 2 includes scads of well-known folks. This feels less like a fun romp and more like desperation, as the filmmakers clearly hope they’ll get laughs simply because viewers recognize the cameos.

The supporting cast manages to help matters. In particular, Jillian Bell entertains as the movie’s villain.

However, too much of Burger 2 just brings vaguely relate shenanigans and cheesy jokes without coherence or creativity. It’s not a terrible movie but it doesn’t exactly redeem the franchise.

Footnote: some tag scenes and a music video pop up during the end credits.

The Disc Grades: Picture B+/ Audio B/ Bonus D+

Good Burger 2 appears in an aspect ratio of 2.00:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. The movie offered a positive visual impression.

Overall definition seemed pleasing. Only minor softness crept into the occasional wide shot, so the majority of the movie felt accurate.

I noticed no signs of jaggies or edge enhancement, and shimmering was absent. The film lacked print flaws and seemed clean.

In terms of colors, Burger 2 went for a slightly pastel impression. The hues appeared fine within the film’s stylistic choices.

Blacks seemed dark and tight, and shadows demonstrated good clarity. This added up to a satisfying presentation.

A comedy like this wouldn’t seem to be a candidate for a whiz-bang soundtrack. As such, the DTS-HD MA 5.1 audio of Strays fell into expected realms.

Usually the track remained oriented toward ambience, so don’t expect lots of sizzle from the mix. A few more action-oriented segments also brought out some positive movement and engagement.

In particular, fantasies and goofy silliness delivered a dynamic experience. This turned into a reasonably solid soundscape.

Audio quality satisfied. Music was full and rich, while effects showed nice clarity and accuracy.

Speech appeared concise and crisp. Nothing here soared, but it all seemed fine for the project.

The disc comes with a smattering of extras, and Home of the Good Bloopers offers a gag reel. It goes for eight minutes, 15 seconds and supplies the usual silliness and goofs.

Some featurettes follow, and The Comfort Food Classic runs four minutes, 38 seconds. It brings comments from actors Kel Mitchell and Kenan Thompson.

They reflect on the enduring popularity of the 1990s Good Burger sketches and movie as well as the development of the sequel. Expect lots of fluff and not much more.

Behind the Scenes with Kenan and Kel spans eight minutes, 16 seconds. It features Thompson and Mitchell.

This one looks at the cast reunion as well as the updated characters/story, experiences on the set and memories of the original. We find another superficial piece.

Next comes Meat the Employees, a two-minute, 27-second reel. It involves Thompson, Mitchell, and actors Emily Hinkler, Elizabeth Hinkler, Fabrizio Guido, Kamaia Fairburn, and Anabel Graetz.

We see new castmembers and how fun the shoot was. Unsurprisingly, it remains puffy and without value.

Q&A with New Crew lasts six minutes, 31 seconds. We hear from Emily Hinkler, Elizabeth Hinkler, Guido, Fairburn, and Graetz.

Similar to “Meat”, “Crew” discusses actors/characters introduced in Burger 2 and their experiences. As expected, it provides a whole lot more happy talk and little substance.

We also find an Employee Training Video that occupies two minutes, 59 seconds and brings a comedic promo piece. It comes with a few laughs, especially since it delivers unique content from the actors.

Finally, we locate a Good Burger Movie Recap. It fills five minutes, three seconds and offers a refresher for anyone who either missed the 1997 film or just don’t remember it well.

While Good Burger 2 tops the 1997 original, that doesn’t seem like an impressive feat. The movie offers a few minor laughs but it lacks consistency or much cleverness. The Blu-ray boasts solid picture and audio but supplements remain forgettable at best. Long-time fans will probably like this sequel but it seems unlikely to convert new viewers.

Viewer Film Ratings: 1.5 Stars Number of Votes: 2
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