July 1, 2013

Review: Despicable Me 2


Despicable Me 2

Disclosure: I was provided two tickets to an advance screening of this movie. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Why write a review of Despicable Me 2 when (1) people will see it regardless of this review and (2) there are professional reviews that range from a “despicable” 1-star to a gushing 5. So what is it? An absolute “must see” because it’s a great story and so well done or a “don’t waste your money” because it completely misses the mark? For me it was neither. For my daughter, probably a 4.

I didn’t see Despicable Me when it first hit the big screen. And, lucky for me, it didn’t matter because that story line (which I have now seen) isn’t all that important. That’ll bode well for the adults who didn’t see the prior movie but who takes the kids. If you didn’t see the first movie, it won’t matter. All you have to know is that Gru is a villain-turned-good-guy and those adorable yellow things are called Minion. Yes, minion. As in, “I don’t need to do it, I’ll have my minion do it for me.”.

Kids will love the movie. Shown in 3D, the animation is top-notch and the story is easy to follow. For most kids who go to see it, they’ll be familiar with the story but it won’t matter that this one doesn’t flow from it related back to it very much. Adults will appreciate the animation and the sweet, but very predictable, storyline.


5 Reasons Adults Will Like Despicable Me 2

1. The story is predictable, but still engaging. Some kid-focused movies tend to dumb down their plots or focus on trite and over-written stories. While the plot is one we’ve seen before, that’s what makes it good. The writers have taken a plot suitable for an adult good guy vs. bad guy movie and make it kid friendly without making it adult unfriendly.

2. The 3D effects are better integrated. Like recent 3D blockbusters, the technology is better integrated into the story rather than just being there for the kids to ooh and aah over. I felt more part of the movie than the movie coming at me.

3. The voice cast is top-notch. With those adorable Minion vying for your attention (and often winning), Steve Carell makes Gru come alive. The characters aren’t just speaking, they have well-developed personalities that make them feel less animated and more real. Kristin Wiig gave Lucy a voice and personality that many adults could relate to and likely find someone we know that could easily be Lucy.

4. The jokes are both appropriate and funny. One of the challenges with kid-oriented movies is that often there are two sets of funny lines. There are those for the kids that tend to border on the annoying and ridiculous, and the other set for the adults which are references to things kids don’t get but still ask about or double-entendres that, again, cause parents to have to explain things they many not wish. Despicable Me 2, keeps the funny and jokes to things that most kids can relate to and that adults won’t feel are groan-worthy.

5. The Minions steal the show – Batman had Robin. But Gru has Minions! Robin wasn’t nearly as adorable, sweet, or funny. These little yellow creatures may not speak but you know exactly what they’re communicating. And they break out in to song! Songs most adults can identify and relate to. One particular song “I Swear” was a country hit, then covered by not one, but 2, R&B/Pop bands. It’s a beautiful ballad, and, hilariously instead of “I swear” it sounds like they’re saying “underwear”.

It’s easy to see that Despicable Me 2 will be a summer blockbuster and the movie will do very well. It’s fun, entertaining, and has a sweet story that both kids and adults will appreciate. Despicable Me 2 opens nationwide on July 3rd, and is presented in Real D 3D.



Wendy July 1, 2013 at 8:30 am

I want to see it! I watched the first one last night & really loved it.

Sara July 1, 2013 at 4:16 pm

Wendy, I’m sure you’ll love it. It was nice to sit through what is billed as a kid’s movie but still feel entertained as a grown up.

Kate @ Songs Kate Sang July 1, 2013 at 9:10 pm

Thank you for the review! I love Steve Carell – he is too funny! I know my kids are looking forward to seeing it.

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