Paddington Bear captures the heart and warms the soul of everyone he meets onscreen — and he’s done the same offscreen as well.
Paddington 2, the sequel film following the misadventures of the marmalade-obsessed bear, has set a new record on Rotten Tomatoes, becoming the best-reviewed film ever on the review aggregator website. It received 167 fresh reviews and zero negative responses, surpassing the previous record held by Toy Story 2 at 163 fresh and zero negative. Paddington 2 holds a rare and coveted 100 percent fresh score.
Back in November, it seemed Greta Gerwig’s directorial debut Lady Bird would surpass Toy Story 2, but it received one negative review, which knocked it from the top spot and pushed it down to 99 percent fresh.
The Paddington sequel, inspired by writer Michael Bond’s Paddington Bear character, has earned universal praise, as well as several BAFTA nominations, including nods for Best British Film and one for Hugh Grant’s devilishly gleeful turn as the villainous actor Phoenix Buchanan.
Discussing the overwhelmingly positive response to the film, director Paul King told Deadline, “It’s incredibly gratifying. It’s such a strange process making these films which are preposterously labor-intensive…It’s a strange experience and you can’t help but hope for the best for this little character and the film you’ve created. It’s very lovely they [the critics] were warm and enthusiastic.”
Paddington 2 opened in seventh place in its first weekend at the U.S. box office, but looks to continue to attract larger audiences buoyed by strong words of mouth — it received an “A” CinemaScore — and this new record.