Published Mar 01, 2005It is this simple: the scenario of the first Miss Congeniality didn't warrant a sequel. Gracie Hart (Sandra Bullock), an ugly duckling of an FBI agent, was transformed into a beautiful beauty pageant contestant in order to solve a crime. That film barely got by on being "fun" and it's not fun anymore once Gracie's a fashionista, which is what seems to have occurred by the time the sequel, Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous, rolls around. Even the title does not work. If Gracie is still the epitome of congeniality, she wouldn't have been able to transform herself.
Besides her newfound fashion sense, Gracie is also having trouble with her newfound fame, as she is recognised easily while undercover because of what happened the first time around. So she is made the new "face of the FBI" and starts doing the talk show circuit. This doesn't last long, as a contestant and host from the first film get kidnapped, and Gracie is paired with Sam Fuller (Regina King, the best thing about the film) to solve the crime, and thus begins a female version of a buddy-cop comedy.
However, this is no Lethal Weapon. With the numerous disguises Bullock gets placed in (many apparently for comic relief, but this doesn't always go over as planned), Miss Congeniality 2 could have just has well been a bad version of Mrs. Doubtfire 2. Bullock plies her same old "girl next door" charm, which is sadly wearing thin. The chemistry between her and King is good, though, but not enough to save the film.
One would have thought Ms. Bullock would have realised the dangers of bad sequels with bad titles after the disaster that was Speed 2: Cruise Control. But, sadly, this wasn't the case. (Warner)