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Despicable Me - Movie Review

Despicable Me is a great family film.

Derek Thompson
Derek Thompson
Oct 22, 2010
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Movie Info

Genre: Animation, Kids & Family, Comedy

Synopsis: In a happy suburban neighborhood surrounded by white picket fences with flowering rose bushes, sits a black house with a dead lawn. Unbeknownst to the neighbors, hidden beneath this home is a vast secret hideout. Surrounded by a small army of minions, we discover Gru (voiced by Steve Carell), planning the biggest heist in the history of the world. He is going to steal the moon (Yes, the moon!) in Universal's new 3-D CGI feature, Despicable Me. Gru delights in all things wicked. Armed with his arsenal of shrink rays, freeze rays, and battle-ready vehicles for land and air, he vanquishes all who stand in his way. Until the day he encounters the immense will of three little orphaned girls who look at him and see something that no one else has ever seen: a potential Dad.The world's greatest villain has just met his greatest challenge: three little girls named Margo, Edith and Agnes

Rated:PG 

Running Time: 1 hr. 35 min.

In Theaters: Jul 9, 2010 Wide 

US Box Office:$247.1M

The movie follows Gru, who has big plans to steal the moon, but Mr. Perkins at the Bank of Evil won’t give him a loan unless he can provide the shrink ray needed.  Gru steals the shrink ray, but before he can present it to Mr. Perkins, another villain named Vector steals it from him.  In trying to steal it back, Gru gets the idea to adopt three little girls to help him so that he can continue with his moon-stealing scheme.

Despicable Me is funny, filled with action and suspense, and heartwarming.  From the beginning, we get hints that Gru may not be as evil as he wants people to think he is.  He sees a crying boy in the park so he makes him a balloon animal, even though he does soon pop it.  He uses a freeze ray so he won’t have to wait in line at the coffee shop but remembers to tip.  It’s also revealed that Gru has issues with his mother, who never supported him as a child and continues to put him down as an adult.  His evil organization includes his older evil scientist friend, Dr. Nefario, and thousands of cute little minions.

The girls live in an orphanage with the horrible Miss Hattie.  Miss Hattie makes the girls sell cookies, and if they can’t sell enough she makes them stay in a box of shame, which is literally a cardboard box that says “Box of Shame” on it.  Each of the girls have their own distinct personalities that make them lovable.  Agnes, the youngest, is impossibly cute, and despite the conditions she’s grown up in, is incredibly loving and trusting.  Edith, in the middle, is pretty twisted, and though jaded, she’s as loving as her little sister.  Margo, the oldest, is protective of her sisters and knows how to work a situation in her favor, but she’s not as loving and trusting as her younger sisters.

Gru’s own relationship with his mother prevents Gru from loving the girls at first, even though in the beginning he has a hard time denying them anything.  However, they do win him over.  Unfortunately, his pal Dr. Nefario sees this as a problem, because he’s afraid that the girls are distracting Gru from the friends’ plan to steal the moon.

The 3D in the movie itself exists, but it doesn’t make the movie experience.  However, the end credit sequence abuses the fact that the movie is in 3D, and that part, while cute, would obviously be missing something in 2D.

The voice acting is only okay.  Russell Brand and Julie Andrews were superb.  I only knew who Russell Brand was because his character was the only British one in the movie, but I otherwise would not have known.  I had to look in the end credits to see which character Julie Andrews was.  Steve Carell’s accent is kind of okay, but you can tell it’s Steve Carell.  All the other characters, as well, could be readily identified as the voice actor.  It didn’t hurt the characters at all, but with voice acting, I like hearing the diversity in an actor’s voice, and there wasn’t much of that.

Despicable Me is a great family movie.  Kids enjoy it, and parents won’t be disappointed.  The movie doesn’t dumb itself down to be at a children’s level, but just tells a great story while remaining inoffensive and mostly non-violent.  However, this is not a movie for you if you’re just a fan of the actors Steve Carell, Russell Brand, Jason Segel, or any of the others.  It’s nothing like their usual movies aimed at teen and adult audiences, and they’re nothing like the characters they usually portray.

 

Trailer

Keywords: Despicable Me, girls , orphanage , Gru , Steve Carell, Russell Brand, Jason Segel, funny, Animation, Kids & Family, Comedy



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