Thursday, July 9, 2015

Releases July 10th, 2015
1 hr 31 mins
Rated PG
Animated, Comedy


Director: Pierre Coffin, Kyle Balda
Writer: Brian Lynch

Pierre Coffin as Kevin, Stuart, Bob and the Minions
Sandra Bullock as Scarlet Overkill
Jon Hamm as Herb Overkill, an inventor and Scarlet's husband
Michael Keaton as Walter Nelson
Allison Janney as Madge Nelson
Steve Coogan as Professor Flux and Tower Guard
Geoffrey Rush as the Narrator
Jennifer Saunders as Queen Elizabeth II
Hiroyuki Sanada as a sumo wrestler

Steve Carell as Felonious Gru

Review by Stephen M.

One would imagine that a movie centering on just the Minions would be amazingly funny and a great success given the popularity of their characters in Despicable Me.  While there's no doubt the film will be a financial success, I am on the fence on it being amazingly funny.  There are certain elements that Minions try to borrow from Despicable Me that just doesn't work as well in this origin story.  While a good film that's great for kids, adults might find it just a little bananas.

The inherent silliness of the Minions is what makes them so lovable and they are in no short change of silly childlike antics in the film.  Some may question the filmmaker's choice of a particular scene showing the Minions horsing around with a noose; will kids being such naive imitators of what they see.  For adults though the humor is good but wanes especially when the dialogue by Minions is a mixture of European languages and nonsense.  In short supply as in the Despicable Me movies that is fine, but a whole film of their gibberish is quite intolerable.

As with the characters, we have three distinct Minions in Kevin, the brains or leader, Stuart, the banana/hydrant lover and musician, and Bob the childlike Minion.  Each of them while unique, most audience members especially children will be drawn to Bob.  Despite his innocence and cuteness, he doesn't quite match the appeal of Agnes from the original film.   As far as the villains of the film, Scarlet Overkill (Sandra Bullock) and Herb Overkill (Jon Hamm), like Bob and the others just cannot compare to the original film.  Scarlet is about as an unoriginal and boring character you can get.  A villain's only moniker is being overly ambitious?  Herb at the very least has some flair to his character.

Overall, I would recommend the film especially if you have young kids.  I obviously do not like the film as much as I did the original Despicable Me film which was incredible in its originality, humor and design.  Minions is not necessarily a bad animation, but could have been better in its character designs and jokes.  It is an interesting prequel to Despicable Me that is enjoyable if you go in with low expectations.


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