Malayalam movie Honey Bee 2 Celebrations, which released on March 23, has opened to mixed response from audience and critics. The movie, starring Asif Ali and Bhavana in the lead roles, is the sequel of the 2013 commercial hit Honey Bee, directed by Jean Paul Lal aka Lal junior.
Check: Honey Bee 2 audience review
The comedy entertainer has an ensemble cast including Baburaj, Sreenath Bhasi, Balu Varghese, Lal, Krishna Prabha, Amith Chakkalackal, Suresh Krishna, Arya, Lena, Sreenivasan, Assim Jamal, Vijay Babu, Joy Mathew, Ganapathi S Poduwal and many others.
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Review by critics
While a majority of the audience have called it to be a below average movie, critics have made mixed opinions on the Asif-starrer. Many critics have said that it is Sreenath, who has stolen the show with his stellar performance in the comedy entertainer than other actors. "Sreenath Bhasi turns out to be the scene-stealer this time around, and as Abu, he's a riot," reads the review by Nowrunning.
First half review
The reviewer at The TOI states that Honey Bee 2 has enough comedy elements creating laughter riot with Sreenath, Baburaj and Balu holding the movie well with their one-liners till intermission.
Till the intermission, the film is a laughter riot and unlike many contemporary comedies, it mercifully spares us of the cliché humour and situations we have seen in films, over and again. Sreenath Bhasi, Baburaj and Balu Varghese are in their element, and silly-yet-quality laughs just keep coming. Making fun of our megastars, bringing on some hilarious one liners, peppering dialogues with a handful of forgivable new-gen expletives, the film offers a steady stream of laughter.
According to critics, Honey Bee 2 falls flat in its second half.
"The movie enters its second half. And it takes a steep fall there. A narrow story thread is stretched beyond its elasticity and we reach a hazy situation from which the return to glory looks so difficult," according to Onmanorama
"Asif Ali, who enjoys a majority of the screen space in the movie, fails to convince us with his character's emotions. Skilled actors Sreenivasan, Lena and Lal have nothing much to do. Bhavana's Angel is possibly the only character in the movie that the audience can connect with and she does her job neatly. She looks fabulous on the screen too," reads the review on Onmanorama.
What didn't work?
Lensman reviewer claims that with the sequel of Honey Bee lacks elements to entertain the audience, as it has given more importance in establishing the relationship of Seban with his parents. And the result? Baburaj, Balu, Sreenath and Angel, who were the real comedy factors in the prequel get less screen space.
The things that made Honey Bee a winner was the dialogue humor, unintentional comedies that happen while they are running for their lives and also the rapport between the gang. But this time all these elements are missing. A major portion of the runtime is spent on the equation between Seban, his father, mother and Michael Punyalan. If you don't give space for Ambro, Berno, Abu and Angel in this film the chances of you connecting with the audience is quite less. Honey Bee 2 also shows the desperate addition of jokes. Just like Nadirsha, Lal Jr. also tries to include many Kalabhavan artists just for the sake of comedy and that didn't work the way it was meant to.
"Oh, what about the trio of Ferno, Abu and Ambro who were supposed to tickle our funny bones? They are either busy picking up guests for the wedding or running around the town finding cooks for the wedding party or serving drinks. It's disappointing to see how underused they are in the movie," writes the reviewer at Onmanorma.
'Honey Bee' is a film to be savored like those quickie bites that you grab from a fast food restaurant. Its damn fun while it lasts in your mouth and you swallow it without much of a thought, knowing all the while that it never had plans to offer you something to chew on – Nowrunning – 2.5/5
By the time Honey Bee 2: Celebrations reaches its 'happy' ending, we are bewildered: where are the celebrations, bro? That brief untold portion Lal Jr and crew expanded from Honey Bee – that was better left unsaid – Onmanorama – 2/5
You can probably call the first half of Honey Bee 2 a mass-entertainer and the rest, a wannabe emotional drama sans depth. If planning to give it a try, watch the film for its true show stealers Sreenath Bhasi and team. – TOI – 2.5/5
I would say Honey Bee 2 is a disappointment. The plot here looks stuck over something that doesn't look or feel like a major issue. And with elements that made the previous film a witty one time watch missing here, the chances of Honey Bee 2 satisfying you is less. – Lensman – 2/5