Minions: A dungaree-clad and goggle wearing species with an unidentifiable, non-translatable yet universally understood language. The colourful and loveable brand has stretched into a feature-length side project following the hugely successful Despicable Me films, which put the minions on the map.
Minions (2015) spans back to the dawn of time, where we witness the minions evolving through the ages, existing to serve various forms of evil from the T-Rex to Napoleon and even Dracula (to name a few)! The minions fail each of their masters with their despicable actions, and without order, the minions become lost, isolated and sink to an all-time low. In 1968, Kevin hatches a plan with his companions, the rebellious Stuart and the fun-sized Bob (all voiced by director Pierre Coffin), by his side to venture out into the world. They travel from their current residence in the ice caves of Antarctica to Orlando, Florida in search of a new evil boss and where better to look than Villain Con? The global convention held for super villains seeking out new henchmen. This leads them to the world’s first ever-female super villain, Scarlett Overkill (voiced by Sandra Bullock) and her “mad” scientist partner Herb (voiced by Jon Hamm). This meeting of evil not-exactly-geniuses culminates in a trip to London in an attempt to steal the Queen’s crown but, as expected, a multitude of things go wrong, causing much hilarity for the audience.
Minions is packed full of physical and slapstick humour from the canary crew but delivers uneven results. The movie might even peak with its opening that chronicles the minions through time and their encounters with wicked historical figures, which had also been heavily exploited in the trailer. Another scene that received a big laugh from the audience, which was filled with adults and children alike, saw the minions hitchhiking and bumping a ride with a superbly villainous family. I really liked these characters and it made me realise that this film needed humans. Despicable Me 1 & 2 had the support of Gru and his girls but the evil villains in this movie are not as menacing, scheming or memorable as its predecessor, perhaps the characters are underwritten because they aren’t that important to the franchise as a whole. I had been hoping to see more of Villain Con too, this event had great possibilities but instead it just became one big stage to introduce us to the Overkill’s.
The film jumps from its quick-fire flick through history in its opening sequence to Antarctica, New York, Orlando and London! Whilst all of these destinations are brought to life with impressive 3D, the story becomes quite unevenly paced and you are left feeling that its taken some major turns in the road for the purpose of filling the run-time and accommodating the minions humour. BA-NA-NA. Kids will love it and you won’t hate it because visually this movie is a real treat, the animation is on top form and each scene is filled with chaotic minion mayhem. However, the script could have been a little bit tighter; there isn’t a strong central story to keep the audience compelled (at least, the adults), which left me questioning whether the minions are better when providing comic relief as supporting characters, rather than taking centre stage – funnily enough, the minions are aware of this fact too… Roll on Despicable Me 3 (scheduled for 2017)!