Friday, July 10, 2015

MINIONS (C-, C-, B+, A- and A+)

Just weeks ago, Pixar Animation’s INSIDE OUT showered audiences with brilliantly meaningful ideas on how we think, feel and grow via our core emotions of joy, anger, fear, sadness and disgust.  The prequel-ish spin-offedness of MINIONS, oddly, dabbles in similar emotional waters that are much shallower and not at all by design… Some of these emotions include, but are not limited to, Boredom and Disappointment. I may be split on the DESPICABLE ME franchise to date (loved the first one, disliked the second one), but I’ve always been able to grasp the attraction of these loyal, banana-yellow, Tic Tac-ian little critters.  They’re mischievous, caring, clumsy and funny. I get it.  But making an entire movie based solely on their dervish-whirling exploits quickly becomes a taxing chore of cinema watching… The gibberish-laden dialogue is tiresome, the lack of character depth uninvolving, the Sandra Bullock/Jon Hamm voice work is uninspired and the overall story is a chaotically uninteresting mess (whose climax is more-or-less ripped from 1977’s The Muppet Movie).  Another point of note, that most kids won’t be immediately affected by, is the violence.  Back in the day, Loony Tunes would strap a coyote on roller skates to an oversized firework and blow him up over some generic terrain – with MINIONS, we have a rocket-propelled human blow up in Space Shuttle Challenger fashion over England…  There’s plenty of explosions and weapon-play, a funeral scene, a police chase shoot out and a carriage chase with the queen that’s somewhat reminiscent of the Princess Diana tragedy.  The violence here is specific and plays more toward the real world. I love slapstick humor, but it’s taken too far at times in this flick.  With so much going on in this movie, it’s actually quite remarkable how dully routine these proceedings feel.  All this being said, your children are sure to love what they see… The best part for me was watching my 5-year old (A+) with his eyes glued to the screen, heartily laughing and giddily bopping on the edge of his seat throughout. My 10- and 8-year olds gave it a B+ and A-, respectively.  It’s worth mentioning that, as an adult, you should also experience Patience (because it’s not awful and not that long) as well as Gratefulness (that your children enjoyed this low hanging fruit humor as much as they did).  Always colorful and sporadically funny, MINIONS is a pandemically pratfall-y and charisma-free affair.  A movie for the whole family that only half of your family may love…

Starring the voices of: Sandra Bullock, Jon Hamm, Allison Janney and Michael Keaton
Directed by: Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda (DESPICABLE ME and DESPICABLE ME 2)
Rated: PG
Running time: 1hr. 31min.
Story: The story of Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment's Minions begins at the dawn of time. Starting as single-celled yellow organisms, Minions evolve through the ages, perpetually serving the most despicable of masters. Continuously unsuccessful at keeping these masters-from T. rex to Napoleon-the Minions find themselves without someone to serve and fall into a deep depression. But one Minion named Kevin has a plan, and he-alongside teenage rebel Stuart and lovable little Bob-ventures out into the world to find a new evil boss for his brethren to follow. The trio embarks upon a thrilling journey that ultimately leads them to their next potential master, Scarlet Overkill (Academy Award (R) winner Sandra Bullock), the world's first-ever female super-villain. They travel from frigid Antarctica to 1960s New York City, ending in mod London, where they must face their biggest challenge to date: saving all of Minionkind...from annihilation. (c) Universal

Official site:


Unlimited Animation Movies said...

This Pixar character reminds me childhood cartoon series Cats and Dogs used to be air on Nick channel.

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