Despicable Me 2 – 2013
Directors Pierre Coffin, Chris Renaud
Starring Steve Carell, Kristen Wiig, Benjamin Bratt, Miranda Cosgrove, Elsie Fisher, Dana Gaier, Russell Brand, Steve Coogan, Ken Jeong
Screenplay Cinco Paul, Ken Daurio
It’s a simple premise. Put a threadbare story involving super criminals, make one a loveable doof who can’t resist cute kids (who can?), throw in some adorable Igor types and then you’ve got a movie for people who likes adorable things. This time, Gru, the bland villain has given up the villain part and he is in need of a woman. What else is there? Oh, there’s another villain or two and the minions get turned into something wilder and somewhat cuter.
On the plus side, there are more minions, and other characters besides Gru (Carell) who is drab and boring as he was the first time around. Wiig plays his love interest, which carried over into Anchorman 2. There’s really nothing great going on here, except what has happening in the first film: Minions. They are nonsensical and adorable. They don’t require too much imagination or commitment to understanding.
The soundtrack, once more handled with pure pop grace by Pharrell Williams, is a nice source of interludes, bridging the gap between scenes. All of the guest starring voices seem wasted. They add nothing to the characters that a good voice actor couldn’t. None of this matters, though. All monies paid out have come back tenfold. The next movie, called Minions, should make even more, as they dump the Gru character and concentrate on what everyone really likes about the series. Then Gru will be back, because Steve Carell likes what he gets from this series and since he’s not been considered a net negative so far, why not?
The only way this film series can be derailed is if someone heavily involved is convicted of a major crime. The crime of unoriginal thinking and being average in every way besides unbearable cuteness doesn’t count. After all, Hello Kitty’s still going strong after all these years.
(*** out 0f *****)