Yeah, you probably thought I was going to talk about MYSELF didn’t you? Don’t try to deny it, I can see into your mind and I know your naughty thoughts! Since I lied to you all in my 2018 in Review post and promised more movies in 2019, I figured I’d start the year off right with a movie that I absolutely love. Thanks to Orangutan Librarian for doing a post on Minions and reminding me to get this ball rolling.
I was late to this party (as is the case with almost all the movies I watch, excepting John Wick) but my goodness, I’m solidly in now.
Basic premise is that Gru is a villain who keeps getting upstaged by another younger villain. Gru decides he’s going to steal the moon but needs the prototype of the Shrink Ray to do so. Of course, Young Villain has already stolen the Shrink Ray. Gru adopts 3 girls who are selling girl scout cookies so he can slip robot cookies into the Fortress and steal the Shrink Ray. Gru ends up fully taking on the roll of the girls’ father and it begins to affect his performance as a villain. His resident mad scientist, Dr Nefario, gets the girls put back in the orphanage so Gru will concentrate on stealing the moon. Gru does steal the moon only to have Young Villain steal it from him. Young Villain also kidnaps the 3 girls to have leverage over Gru. Turns out the Shrink Ray isn’t permanent so Gru has to rescue the girls AND return the Moon so it doesn’t destroy the city. In the end Gru adopts the girls and everyone starts disco dancing at the girls’ performance of Swan Lake. Sigh, those silly minions!
The first thing that hooked me was the Minions:
Boatloads of semi-stupid, nearly indestructible minions who talk in indecipherable french and love bananas. They are funny and got enough laughs to get their own movie later on.
They also are the window into who Gru truly is. He cares about his minions and knows all their names and their families. He’s not evil, just a villain. Gru starts off as a real bad ass and I loved him in that role. How can you not love somebody who walks into a coffee shop, hollers out “FREEZE RAY!” and proceeds to walk up the line freezing everyone, grabbing the coffee and pastry for the first customer and then walking out the door?
Then the girls come onto the scene and you know that Gru is going to turn into the man with a heart of gold. Each of the girls is very unique and heartwarming in their own way.
Vector and his Father, who runs the Bank of Evil, make for great “real” villains and are so ham handed and over the top and silly that there isn’t a shred of doubt that Gru will prevail. Kind of nice to have the Good vs Evil be so clear cut. Of course, for the target audience of 10 year olds, I’m sure it’s breathtakingly tantalizing if Gru will be The Good Guy or not!
The ending is the perfect blend of silly, sappy and funny all rolled into one. Gru disco dancing with the girls is just priceless and is worth almost the whole movie just for that.
Overall, this was so much fun. There were a lot of clever ideas and humorous gags and I’ve been re-watching this regularly several times a year. Not tired of it yet! It also has heart in just the right amount to make me all manly blurry eyed. Completely recommend this. If you have watched Despicable Me, what did you think of it?
Next month I’m thinking of going over either The Transporter with Jason Statham or RED with Bruce Willis. Feel free to let me know your preference if you have one.