Despicable Me 2 (2013) Review
The minions are back in Despicable Me 2! This family favourite reveal an endless amount of hilarious, and ridiculous entertainment. This falls very closely within the Pixar tradition, minus the realism. This film could've had more potential. Unfortunately, the prerogative of director Pierre Coffin and Chris Renaud was simply the assurance of guaranteeing pointless, wholly unnecessary humor. At times, you believed that the story was getting serious, but all you're left with are the Minions.
Directors Coffin and Renaud have developed a story that's completely different than the first. In fact, plot-wise in comparison with the previous Despicable Me, there is so few unrecognizable similarities in the progression of the storyline and plot. A simple, basic storyline is exactly what the children want, but what about their suffering parents. Surely, most of them find the plot ridiculous.
Here's the IMDB summary of the story:
While Gru, the ex-supervillain is adjusting to family life and an attempted honest living in the jam business, a secret Arctic laboratory is stolen. The Anti-Villain League decides it needs an insider's help and recruits Gru in the investigation. Together with the eccentric AVL agent, Lucy Wilde, Gru concludes that his prime suspect is the presumed dead supervillain, El Macho, whose his teenage son is also making the moves on his eldest daughter, Margo. Seemingly blinded by his overprotectiveness of his children and his growing mutual attraction to Lucy, Gru seems on the wrong track even as his minions are being quietly kidnapped en masse for some malevolent purpose.
The story deals with themes like loyalty, cause, and dedication. Pervasive throughout any children's, or family movie, is the revisitation to childhood imaginations and experiences. Animation films like these depend on the child's infinite imagination, the constant struggle to envision the unimaginable.
Sadly, Despicable Me 2 could have explored these themes in depth, much like in Toy Story. Unfortunately, both directors felt that the target audience needed an insurmountable super villain. Somehow, Gru finds himself operating a mexican restaurant without showcasing the transition to that stage clearly; in addition, character development is virtually null. Characters are cast rapidly throughout the film with little attention to their development, only to express a brief minor little gag.
Despicable Me 2 vs. Umpa Lumpas
Somehow, the Minions really evoke the fascination of families and children. They're not really characters, I would say, but more like little umpa lumpas.
The difference is clear, the Despicable Me minions are cuter and rounder. They also wear worker outfits that are funnier. They mimic closely to the fantasy and the imagination of the younger audience, but for most of us this movie is merely a petty excuse to rehash the same concept of "minions" over and over again. Animation movies are free to exercise as much creative potential as possible, but they must use that to more creative means, as in pushing the boundaries a little. I didn't find that in the minions, nor in the overall story from Despicable Me 2.
I would avoid watching this movie! Despicable Me 2 is a real time waster.