0

Elle Woods, Reese Witherspoon, the ditzy blonde who graduated from Harvard Law School and won the heart of Emmett Richmond, Luke Wilson, in the first Legally Blonde, film two years ago, is planning her wedding which, she's convinced, wouldn't be complete without the presence of the mother of her beloved Chihuahuia, Bruiser. Bruiser's mum is traced to a laboratory where the poor woofer is being experimented on for the cosmetics industry and, to make matters worse, the cosmetics company in question is a major client of the law firm where Elle works. Fired from her job, she goes to Washington to lobby for animal rights. Hollywood seems to have produced more sequels than ever this year: the logic is that, even if the sequel to a hit film achieves only a fraction of the box-office success of original, it still has a high enough profile to make a profit. Most, not all, sequels have been pale shadows of the films that begat them, and Legally Blonde is no exception. Almost all the freshness and spark of the first film, which was directed by Australian Robert Luketic, is missing here; even Reese Witherspoon, with a vastly inflated salary and an executive producer credit, lacks the sense of fun, innocence and tenacity she displayed the first time around. Director Charles Herman-Wurmfeld does a strictly functional job, and inviting comparisons with Frank Capra's great Washington satire, Mr. Smith Goes To Washington, by including an excerpt from it, is extremely unwise.