Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Not So Despicable

2010 was a great year for animated movies: Toy Story 3 (which made me cry), Despicable Me (which made my wife cry (which is not to say that TS3 didn't make her cry, but it's much more impressive to make me cry at a movie than her)), and Megamind. So, although we really loved Despicable Me when we saw, it still got overshadowed by the other two. Meaning we own the other two, but I never bought Despicable Me despite the incredible voice work by Steve Carell. I feel bad about that, now.

Which may seem kind of silly, to feel bad about not buying a DVD, but, really, we all, the whole family, loved Despicable Me. When it came out. But, see, the news of Despicable Me 2 didn't really do that much for me. It was kind of a shrug and "oh, yeah, that's cool," but I wasn't dying to go see it or anything. I'm sure that's because we haven't watched it again since 2010, and I'd forgotten how good it was. My daughter, however, was dying to go see it. I'm pretty sure she wants minions of her own.

So we went to see Despicable Me 2, and I'm pretty sure it's the best movie I've seen all summer. Okay, second best. Star Trek beats it but not by much. At any rate, it was so much better than Monsters University, which is its actual competition. Not only was Despicable more funny than Monsters, but it had all of the heart and soul that Monsters was lacking. And it made my wife cry.

I don't actually have anything negative to say about the movie. The closest thing to a negative is that the plot is almost conventional, but, see, it's only almost conventional. The fact that there is an attempt to recruit Gru to the AVL (Anti-Villain League) at the beginning of the movie, because of his expertise as a former villain, puts things just off-kilter enough that you don't really know which direction the movie is going. And I won't tell you which, because that would just spoil it.

And, I have to say, that scene where Gru is on the phone with the people who failed to send the Fairy Godmother to his adopted daughter's birthday party... well, that was classic. As a father, I've made those calls, and they had that bit down perfectly. All the way to the hanging up and... well, that, also, would be telling. But there are so many of  those moments incorporated into the movie that it made it great for kids and adults.

The animation was terrific. The voice work from the actors was excellent. The minions were funnier than ever.

Wait, now that I think about it, there is one issue with the movie. The title. Because Gru isn't so despicable anymore. I can't wait for a third one, and I'm gonna have to make sure I pick up both of these movies, now. It's great stuff.


  1. I have never seen any of this stuff. Will copy these titles down, else I will forget.

    I got your novel. Thank you! Not sure when I will begin reading. I have figured out or maybe it was magic but I can now read "Beer in the Shower" 's book on my tablet.

    So now I had better get off here and get to it.

  2. And with as much money as it's making, there will be a third.
    I didn't like this one as much as the first, although my wife loved it. Thought the plot was a bit thin. Then again, the Minions are funnier than ever and make up for it. They really are the best animated creature ever created.

  3. My kids were dying to see it and came home so happy. They are still talking about it and laughing. Obviously it was a 2 thumbs up for them.

  4. Never saw the first one. Or Toy Story 3 for that matter.

  5. Hey Andrew! I've never seen these movies, although I do like a lot of animated stuff...I saw Toy Story ages ago, (the first one and I thought it was awesome) and The Incredibles, which I loved....Despicable Me sounds good, I love Steve Carrell. Did you see the short that was on the Incredibles DVD...I think it was called Boundin'. It was about a little lamb and it was completely adorable. I loved it.

  6. Love me some minions - which is why we called our A-Z Challenge helpers minions - and can't wait to see this one.
    Tina @ Life is Good

  7. I believe Despicable Me was great but the trailers for D2 didn't interest me at all. I saw Monsters University at the movies however and though I was skeptical because it was a prequel instead of an original it turned out to have all the heart and realness of a Pixar movie. So sorry if it wasn't so great for you. I do plan to see the Minion movie when it comes out though.

  8. Aziz Ansari as the voice of the slug in "Epic" is better than any number of babbling Twinkies using a language I was never meant to understand.

    Minion speak: ;alkdhnpoiucn;lkejn

    Audience: LOLOLOL

    I don't get it :(

  9. DM2 was the first time Mr Bunches sat thru an ENTIRE movie. He and Sweetie and The Boy saw it on July 5. She has been waiting for him to take thaf step so it was a great day. That also speaks well of the movie.

    Mr F and I, meanwhile, opted to go to a playground and go on a slide. While there were no minions, we still had a fun time.

    Your daughter may already HAVE some minions.

  10. Funny, I rented Despicable Me and didn't finish it. Thought it was terrible. I wonder if I should try again.

  11. It's rare that a sequel is as good as the first movie. Writers should be taking lessons.

  12. David: Which of their novels are you reading?
    Glad you got House safe and sound. You should see the condition of the package I just sent to BftS.

    Alex: Well, we can hope.
    I think you only thought the plot was thin because you don't have kids and couldn't really appreciate what he was going through with his daughters.

    JKIR,F!: That's certainly how my daughter felt about it.

    PT: Oh, it's definitely worth seeing. The first one, that is. If you don't like that one, then, of course, you shouldn't bother with the second. If you liked Toy Story 1 & 2, you should see 3.

    Eve: You should definitely sit down and watch all three Toy Story movies. It may be the only series ever where it's just impossible to decide which is the best one.

    Tina: They are hilarious!

    Sheena: Yeah, MU fell flat for me. Fun, but that was about it.

    Michael: Oh, man, Aziz was awesome as that slug! And I liked Epic, but it was pretty typical overall.

    Briane: Oh, yeah, she does. She calls them... "brothers." heh
    I remember the first movie my oldest sat through: Anastasia. He was entranced. For my second, well, that actually depends on what part of his life we're talking, I guess, but that's another story. I can't actually remember with my daughter. She kept us out of movies for years.

    Jo: Probably not. I spent years trying to like crab because I thought I should. I finally had to just accept, "No, I don't like crab." So, if you didn't like it the first time, it's probably not likely that that will change.

    Jeanne: Movie makers for sure.

  13. "The Missing Link"

    Your book is in perfect condition. In fact the box is even in perfect condition. :)

  14. Great review Andrew. I've heard a lot of good things about it, but I owe it to myself to watch the first one before I go.

  15. David: That's good to hear.
    I enjoyed Missing Link and did a review of it a ways back.

    Maurice: Oh, yeah, you should definitely see the first one!

  16. I really didn't care for Despicable Me (the first one). The minions were cute, but the story was so-so.

    I watched Monsters University recently, and really liked it. I agree that it didn't have much of a soul, but it was still enjoyable.

    I think I'll check out Despicable Me 2 on your recommendation.

  17. Flippy: Well, if you didn't like the first one, I don't know that you would like the second. It was a lot of fun, but I wouldn't say the story is better than the first.