Minions: Movie Review
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Ever since they first appeared in their 2010 debut film, Despicable Me, the minions have been fan favorites. Moviegoers know these little yellow, gibberish talkin' balls of fun as Gru's underlings. With Universal Pictures' latest release, we get their origin story.
Minions will have some snickering, but the 91-minute animated feature is lacking the kind of heart and soul we got from Despicable Me. Boasting an all-star vocal cast, the movie doesn't fully deliver as it relies on cute minions and crude humor to carry the feature-length film. Its impact is uncertain, especially since it's opening to a box office that includes Pixar's family-friendly summer hit, Inside Out.
THE MOVIE IN A MINUTE
Aimless and depressed, the minions are villain underlings without purpose. Determined to find a new "boss", Kevin, Stuart and Bob leave the tribe and venture out on a worldwide journey that eventually drops them off in 1968 America. In Orlando, they attend a sort of Comic Con for the world's most evil criminals. It's there they meet supervillain Scarlett Overkill (voiced by Sandra Bullock). But their plan takes a turn when her true colors are revealed.
THE GOOD AND BAD IN MINIONS
Minions is cute and funny. However, the amount of crude humor and lack of heart will hurt it. Now, if you're thinking, how in the world can they stretch out a storyline with dialogue made up of nonsensical words? You're not alone.
It's a daring feat for a feature film to star characters that speak an undecipherable language with no subtitles. Surprisingly, the filmmakers do fairly well getting the movie started. But, halfway through Minions it gets a little tiresome. Though kids will likely be entertained, older audience members might start shifting in their theater seats.
That said, it's impressive that Pierre Coffin, who co-directed the movie with Kyle Balda, voices all 899 minions, speaking an actual language the filmmakers created. That's something else. The rest of the vocal cast includes a talented bunch, namely Academy Award-winning actress Sandra Bullock (The Blind Side), Golden Globe winner Jon Hamm (Mad Men), Oscar nominee Michael Keaton (Birdman), and Golden Globe nominee Allison Janney (CBS' Mom, The West Wing). Still, by the end, fans might long for the comedy Steve Carell brought to the endearing villain-turned-dad character of Gru.
Rated PG for action and rude humor, Minions is older kid-friendly. Parents with younger children should know there are some scary moments, including a scene when the minions are forced into an ominous dungeon filled with torture devices. As for the crude comedy, you'll see some cartoon butts, witness some hypnotized guards dancing naked and hear some potty humor.
IN THE END
Minions will elicit laughs and the occasional "awww" from moviegoers. Unfortunately, it lacks the heartwarming effect of Despicable Me, or more recently, Inside Out. Older kids and minion fans will probably enjoy the film, but for others, the slapstick silliness may be too much.
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