August 28, 2015

Movie: Minions (2015)

Filed under: Hollywood Movies — Tags: , , — krishnafromtoronto @ 9:37 pm

imageIt is definitely hard to hate the minions right? No matter what they do, the movie is going to be really huge, correct? Can a minion movie ever go wrong?

The answers to the questions above turn out to be No, Yes, and Yes. This movie unfortunately does not live up to the enormous expectations raised by the first two movies where they feature (The Despicable Me series). Why? Is it because Gru is not there? Is Gru the real power behind those successes alone? Not necessarily. The disappointment is mainly because they did not go anywhere with this movie at all.

The first two movies had a lovely plot running through it, and I just do not mean Gru’s compassion in the first and his love life in the second. Even minions were a big part of the plot that set to tell a wonderful story. The self-deprecation that ran through the plot was very endearing. Even the title ‘Despicable Me’ is adorable. The myriad minions of the “evil lord” were called… well… simply ‘minions’. Beautiful. And then Gru in the first is dragged kicking and screaming to give the kids a place in his heart, against all his “natural” instincts. In the Despicable Me 2, the way the Gremlins turn evil with a purple body and a gremlin like transformation was phenomenal! Even the first scene where an entire camp is taken away with a giant magnet was great, tongue in cheek it may be. It worked as a whole, and made for a good movie.

This movie lacks most of the glue that made the first two movies work. The endearing minions are there, and in fact, the premise is great: How did the minions get to work for Gru? Where did they come from? What did they do before they met and joined Gru?

The execution of the plot leaves a lot to be desired. There is that attempt at self-deprecation, true. The evil lady is called Scarlet Overkill. But it does not really work. The beginnings of minions is a cop out and the humour felt stitched together. I wondered why and then it struck me. The story seems to be a series of gags stitched together with no coherent theme running through the movie. Yes, they make fun of celebrities (including the Queen, her exaggerated accent and her forward teeth?) but it feels phony.

In the 1950s it (I mean the storyline, not the animation, which is top class) would have worked. Come to think of it, it feels like one of the Warner Brother movies which is simply capers of a character (Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Wile E Coyote) and each gag forgotten after it is delivered. These days, even these folks have delivered too much in the past movies for me to be satisfied with a cartoon strip like story.

The answers to fundamental questions like ‘How did the Minions come to be?’ and ‘How did they get to wear the trademark jeans?’  are all cop outs. (I don’t want to describe these because, though these are not central to the plot – such as it may be – they may be spoilers. If you see the movie, please let me know if you agree or disagree.

Are there no good parts in the movie? Yes there are. Their search for the Ultimate Evil Lord to become minions to is amusing (I mean the concept and not the disjointed episodes which form part of their search), and for some time they really think they have it in the form of the Overkill lady.

How they find her is also kind of Meh…

It ends with their finally finding the Master Villain – a young Gru of course!

All in all, does not live up to the expectations. A victim of its own (previous) success?

Let us say 4/ 10

– – Krishna


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