Minions

"Very Good"

Minions Review


Utterly charming, this silly prequel rewrites the origin story of the minions and sends them on a series of adventures that are gently anarchic and refreshingly low-key for an animated blockbuster. The film has an unusually gentle tone, with some real visual artistry to it rather than the cookie-cutter story structure and imagery in most summer movies. And while it's not riotously funny, children will be mesmerised and adults will be smiling.

It opens at the dawn of time, as minions evolve into yellow pill-shaped sidekicks who serve their evil masters throughout history. When they find themselves without a leader, they try to build a society in an arctic cave, but something just isn't right. So Kevin, Stuart and Bob (voiced in Esperanto-style gibberish by director Pierre Coffin) head off to 1968 New York to find a villain to work for. There they hear about ruthless baddie Scarlet Overkill (Sandra Bullock), so they head to Villain-Con in Orlando to meet her. She's impressed by their loyalty and takes them to London to work with her inventor husband Herb (Jon Hamm) on a nefarious plan to steal the British crown from the Queen (Jennifer Saunders). But nothing goes quite as planned.

Since it's set in the 1960s, the filmmakers give the film a groovy vibe, with sun-drenched animation and hilariously colourful details in every scene. Adults are more likely to catch references to things like the Monkees, Hair or Bewitched, but kids will enjoy the general silliness, including lots of chances to sing along with the minions as they babble through classic tunes. Thankfully, directors Coffin and Kyle Balda resist temptation to use the standard animation formula, opting instead for a meandering pace, a less pushy moral message and action scenes that emerge from the plot, settings and characters. And the starry voice cast refreshingly disappears into the characters.

There are a lot of hilariously oddball people in this film, from Scarlet and Herb to a pair of villain wannabes (Michael Keaton and Allison Janney) who follow our hapless heroes on their journey. The freeform plot has an easy unpredictability to it, skilfully augmented by imagery that's remarkable for a its photorealistic quality, with softer edges than most animated movies. All of the nonstop visual gags lead to a surreal finale that culminates in the moment Gru (Steve Carell) meets the minions. It's all fairly pointless, although the cheerful anarchy may encourage us to be a bit more mischievous. And frankly, we can't help but want a minion of our very own.

Watch the trailer for Minions 2 here:




Minions

Facts and Figures

Genre: Animation

Run time: 104 mins

In Theaters: Friday 10th July 2015

Distributed by: Universal Pictures

Production compaines: Universal Pictures, Illumination Entertainment

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Cast & Crew

Director: , Kyle Balda

Producer: Christopher Meledandri,

Starring: as Stuart, Kevin and Bob (voices), as Scarlett Overkill (voice), as Herb Overkill (voice), as Tina (voice), as Sumo (voice), as Reine Elizabeth II (voice), as Walter Nelson (voice), as Madge Nelson (voice), as Professor Flux / Tower Guard, as Narrator, as Gru (voice), as VNC Announcer / Walter Jr. (voice), Dave Rosenbaum as Fabrice (voice)

Also starring:

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