Monsters University: it’s part of the game that a sequel (or a prequel, as the case may be) will be judged not only on its own terms, but also compared to the original work. The best ones will expand the story and the universe, organically, while still maintaining a sense of identity. By such measure, this film doesn’t work all that well, as the characters are not quite formed or aligned with their future selves; to its credit, it plays with expectations smartly and doesn’t try to emulate the rather unique relationship from the first movie. That said, it still is a fun ride and a competent (if somewhat shallower than the usual Pixar) piece of storytelling, with colorful, diverse and attractive character designs.
It was preceeded by the lovely and original short The Blue Umbrella. Very delicately done, beautiful visuals, simple and touching story.