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minions the rise of gru

★★★

starring: steve carell, taraji p. henson, alan arkin, and michelle yeoh

 

REVIEWER: lyall carter

The untold story of one twelve-year-old's dream to become the world's greatest supervillain.

When the infamous supervillain supergroup, the Vicious 6, oust their leader—legendary martial arts fighter Wild Knuckles (Oscar® winner Alan Arkin) - 12 year old Gru, their most devoted fanboy, interviews to become their newest member. 

 

The Vicious 6 is not impressed by the diminutive, wannabe villain, but then Gru outsmarts (and enrages) them, and he suddenly finds himself the mortal enemy of the apex of evil. With Gru on the run, the Minions attempt to master the art of kung fu to help save him, and Gru discovers that even bad guys need a little help from their friends.

 

The fifth installment of the ‘Gruniverse’ sticks to the tried and true Despicable Me/Minions narrative formula of a big threat to the world and the minions, with Gru in tow, helping to save the day - all by hilarious accident. The film follows a couple of subplots as characters crisscross the country which all leads to a climactic battle in the final act. The various narrative strands never get twisted up in knots, but are pretty simple to follow.

 

Minions the Rise of Gru is an undemanding tale for adults and children alike. Which isn’t to say that it’s not entertaining - not in the slightest. In our viewing party everyone from grandpa to mid thirties me to my twelve year old niece and ten year old year old nephew were thoroughly engrossed and laughing throughout. 

 

The animation pops with color, vibrancy, and action. The animators really leaned into the 70’s aesthetic of the film's setting, creating gorgeous yet zany cars, outlandish villainous lairs, and spectacular fantastical creatures. As always the filmmakers manage to squeeze humor out of nearly every possible avenue from pure slapstick moments to even the names of the Vicious 6 super villain group.

 

While Minions The Rise of Gru is an undemanding tale, its vibrant animation, slapstick humor, and action packed sequences will entertain both adults and children alike.

★★★