Latest ReviewsMOVIES

Minions: The Rise Of Gru Review

Young Gru (Steve Carell) wants to be a supervillain and doesn’t want to wait until he’s an adult. After unsuccessfully trying to join his favourite super-villain team, the Vicious 6, Gru decides to show them just how bad he can be, putting himself, his Minions and the entire world in danger.

Now that we’re five instalments into what we can only apologetically call The Cinematic Gruniverse, a simple formula has been established for any films involving Gru/the Minions. A powerful doohickie will be stolen. At least one Minion or child will go missing. There will be several montages. There will eventually be a battle with something very big. The Minions will save the day by accident. That predictable formula is a bad thing if you’re ever hoping one of these movies will do something unexpected, but is anyone honestly coming to the Minions expecting innovation? That simple formula has repeatedly led to a reliable, undemanding good time at the cinema. And so it proves again.

Minions: The Rise Of Gru

Calling this the second Minions movie is somewhat deceptive and presumably down to the fact that the little yellow weirdos now have stronger brand recognition than Despicable Me. This is a Despicable Me prequel, centred on Gru, with a heavier than usual sprinkling of Minions. In 1976 San Francisco, Gru (Steve Carell) is an awkward, friendless pre-teen who dreams of being a supervillain. He applies to join the world’s premier supervillain team, the Vicious 6, led by Belle Bottom (Taraji P. Henson), but is humiliated in his interview. To show his heroes what they’re missing, Gru steals the mysterious Zodiac Stone, the Vicious 6’s most treasured loot. He and his loyal Minions find themselves on the run from the most dangerous people in the world, seeking the help of someone with his own grudge against the Vicious 6: their betrayed former leader, Wild Knuckles (Alan Arkin).

If plot has never been a particular strong point of these movies, they’ve always been very good at silly incidental jokes.

Structurally, it’s a bit overly busy, splitting up its characters so we have Gru and Knuckles bonding, three Minions learning kung fu with an acupuncturist (Michelle Yeoh) for spurious reasons, another Minion going cross country on a treasure hunt, and the Vicious 6 plotting their revenge. Thankfully, each subplot is simple enough that it never gets confusingly tangled. All the strands eventually collide in a final act that arrives with scant explanation and makes little sense, but it’s gorgeously animated and not short on spectacle.

If plot has never been a particular strong point of these movies, they’ve always been very good at silly incidental jokes. There are some terrific throwaway gags here, not least in the names of members of the Vicious 6: an evil Viking is known as Svengeance (Dolph Lundgren); Nun Chuck (Lucy Lawless) is a spooky nun who splits her crucifix into weapons; and Jean-Claude Van Damme voices a lobster-limbed baddie called Jean Clawed. Kyle Balda, director of the first Minions and Despicable Me 3, has a lot of fun with the film’s 1970s setting, from towering hairdos to a disco soundtrack to evil lairs and Roger Moore-era Bond aesthetic vehicles.

This is just straightforward fun. It’s unlikely to win over anybody unmoved by the previous movies and likely to deliver exactly what you’re expecting if you’ve enjoyed everything so far.

Content Source

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Back to top button