Sandy Kenyon reviews the delightful 'Paddington 2'

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The lovable bear is back on the big screen in the sequel to his earlier hit, and the result is being called "adorable" and "funny," but also "smart" and "kind."

"Paddington 2" has a very rare rating of 100 percent approval on the Rotten Tomatoes website, meaning more than 120 critics liked it. It left me wondering if the movie really be that good.

The lovable bear is back on the big screen in the sequel to his earlier hit, and the result is being called "adorable" and "funny," but also "smart" and "kind." All of which makes him most welcome.

"I have a wonderful family," he tells us.

Paddington adores the Browns, and the feeling is definitely mutual.

"Paddington looks for the good in all of us and somehow finds it," says his "dad," played by Hugh Bonneville of TV's "Downton Abbey."

Sally Hawkins, a possible Oscar nominee for "The Shape of Water," plays his "mom." The movie, of course, is a mix of live action, animation and special effects.

The bear's thoughts are with his Aunt Lucy, a bear who sent him to London to live with the very human Brown family. Paddington is very focused on getting the right birthday gift for Aunt Lucy and finds himself in an antique shop, where he discovers a unique item that would be just perfect.

The pop-up book is the only one of its kind, and they want a lot of money for it. So Paddington decides to get a job to pay for it.

His plan is to wash windows using his fur along with soap and water, but this goes awry when a thief steals the pop-up book from the store. Through a case of mistaken identity, Paddington gets accused of the crime and sent to prison.

"Brown, P. laundry duty," says the guard, whereupon a lone red sock gets into the wash and turns all of the prisoners' uniforms pink. But Paddington prevails, in part because he introduces the convicts to his beloved marmalade. They embrace his simple philosophy: "If you're kind and polite, the world will be right."

I can't remember the last time a prison scenario made me giggle this much, but the bear loses none of his charm behind bars until the real baddie is exposed. This is the latest in line of such roles Hugh Grant has made his specialty: men tripped up by their own vanity. But perhaps the most important member of this cast is Ben Whishaw, who provides the voice of Paddington and gives the character so much humanity.

There is always a short supply of family films that are equally appealing to kids of different ages and their parents, which is perhaps one reason why "Paddington 2" has earned such universal praise. I was charmed and entertained, and I think you will enjoy it.
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