a critiQal film review Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch (2005)

Plot: Lilo (Fanning) and her alien friend Stitch - aka Experiment 626 (Sanders) - are still best friends. They are practicing for a hula dance for the town when Stitch begins to malfunction, going on evil rampages at the worst times. Will Lilo and Stitch's friendship overcome this new glitch - or is this family finished?

Reviewed
743 words (Est. Reading Time 3m 42s)
  • ...while it isn't as creative as the first film (basically going over the same tried-and-true formula as the original), it takes that formula and creates another entertaining film.

Lilo and her pal Stitch are a cash cow for Disney – and they aren’t going to give up milking it until it’s dead…as evidenced by new direct-to-video sequel, Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch.

After the wild popularity of the original film, they immediately released a direct-to-video sequel of sorts (Stitch! The Movie (2003)) – which turned out to be just a lead-in to their new animated television show – and put together a ride at their theme parks (Stitch’s Great Escape – if you haven’t ridden it, don’t…it’s boring if you’re over the age of 5 or so).

Having rounded up all of Stitch’s cousins (all 625 of them, apparently), they didn’t waste a minute throwing together another direct-to-video movie – this one a true sequel. And they aren’t stopping there, with another direct-to-video film (Leroy & Stitch (2006)) coming in 2006. Has this cash cow been over milked, or is Stitch Has a Glitch a worthy continuation of this new Disney franchise?

All of the original voice characters are back for Stitch Has a Glitch, most notably Dakota Fanning as Lilo, Tia Carrere as her big sister/caretaker Nani and Kevin McDonald (“Kids in the Hall” (TV)) as the alien Pleakley. With other straight-to-video Disney sequels (such as Atlantis: Milo’s Return (2002)), the voices of the characters have changed, creating a rather cheap-feeling rip-off of the original film. The same voices help the viewer continue the story in their minds, thus lending an easy familiarity to the characters without the film having to do anything except let the characters speak.

The wildly original Lilo & Stitch (2002) introduced us to the characters, and basically spent the film letting us get to know them. In Stitch Has a Glitch, we already know the characters, so coming up with another plot can be rather difficult. A sequel needs to show us a side of the characters that we haven’t seen before, or throw them into a new situation – while still maintaining the same personalities and moralities that the characters showed in the original film.

With Stitch Has a Glitch, we have a great deal of the familiar mixed in with just a little bit of originality. Not much has changed in these characters lives since we last saw them – with a few exceptions. Jumba and Pleakley still live with Nani, Lilo and Stitch; David is still chasing after Nani, but she’s too busy to ever really spend time with him; Lilo still hulas (although that comes into more focus in this film) and to Lilo and Stitch, Elvis is still the King (and they spend a whole sequence in this film with Elvis as their main concern – again).

About the only new things we are shown in Stitch Has a Glitch are the major plot points – Stitch is malfunctioning while Lilo wants to win a hula contest. Stitch rampaging isn’t anything new, but now he’s evil and doesn’t want to be, rather than wanting to, as he did in the first film. The hula contest is something new, and does shed a little more light on Lilo’s family history, but not much.

As sequels go, Stitch Has a Glitch isn’t one of the best. As Disney straight-to-video sequels go, however, it ranks right up there with the best of ’em. Disney usually just milks their films for all their worth, so we get stinkers like Cinderella 2, 102 Dalmatians, etc.

Occasionally, they’ll end up actually making a decent sequel like The Rescuers Down Under (1990) or Return to Never Land (2002), but that seems more by accident than by design. With this horrible track record of animated sequels, it’s a surprise that people still flock to them – unless you consider that parents will buy films for their kids based on the Disney name alone.

That being said, Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch isn’t all that bad. While it isn’t as creative as the first film (basically going over the same tried-and-true formula as the original), it takes that formula and creates another entertaining film.

It’s a kids film that parents will be able to sit through (mostly laughing it up over Pleakley’s bad relationship advice to David) – and it’s another film any child fan of the original will want to have in their collection. For us slightly older folks, however, it’s probably only worth a rental.

Now, will the formula still prove successful with Leroy & Stitch (2006)? If so, you can bet that won’t be the last we’ll hear of this animated duo.

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