Film Review – ‘Despicable Me 2’

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‘Despicable Me’ is not so despicable in this much anticipated comedy sequel. We rejoin Gru (voiced by Steve Carrell) and his three adopted girls: Margo (Miranda Cosgrove), Edith (Dana Gaier) and Agnes (Elsie Fisher) in the midst of blissful, if slightly hectic, family life. Gru, evil genius turned super dad, joins the Anti-Villain League alongside a handful of new characters and subsequently discovers that someone is stealing his enchanting yellow minions.
The success of ‘Despicable Me’ can largely be attributed to its heart-warming, funny and original storyline. Throw in genius characters on top of a great comedy script and ‘Illumination Entertainment’ had a recipe for success. The only alteration they have made to this winning formula in ‘Despicable Me 2’ is the storyline. Whilst the comedic scenes are on point as nearly all sketches are laugh-out-loud quality, a series of droll sketches squeezed together for 98 minutes do not create a sophisticated narrative.
Kids won’t care about this of course. The eye-popping 3D visuals, changing florescent colours of the minions and the many fart jokes had a little boy sat next to me in the cinema thoroughly enthralled throughout. The clever combinations that appeal to both adult and child prevail again to ensure this family movie is viewed and enjoyed by all audiences.
While the 2010 surprise summer hit became one of the most quoted films that year, the sequel does not have the same inspired one-liners. Lucy’s ‘Lipstick Taser!’ is the only example that stands out in my mind as coming close to ‘It’s so fluffy!’ having seen the film only one week ago. Actions speak louder than words in this flick; the animated minions and their crazy hijinks can take credit for almost all stand out laughs and moments.
Expectations were high and I believe that ‘Despicable Me 2’ matches the precedent set by its precursor on almost all levels, despite being predictable in places. We see Gru’s youngest daughter Agnes long for a mother figure, enter agent Lucy Wilde (Kristen Wiig) into the picture. However, the sequel successfully draws on the cutest and funniest elements from the first film, Agnes and the minions, to progress the series to franchise status. The minions are utilised to full effect in this storyline, with themselves and Dr. Nefario (voiced by Russell Brand) informing integral pivots in the narrative.
What the narrative lacks in focus it makes up for in minions. Lots of laughs and heart-warming moments make this film a success. The minions’ outro to the picture – part Backstreet Boys, part Village People – is inspiring and hopefully will set the bar for their future ventures. Speaking of which, good news for those of you who like me rate the yellow oddballs as the stars of the show. Kevin, Dave and Stuart will be starring in their own spin-off film titled “Minions”, which is due for release in December of 2014. But until then for those of you who go to see ‘Despicable Me 2’ this summer I guarantee you will leave the cinema with a smile on your face.

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