In theatres: Despicable Me 2

Editorial intern Sarah Steele got a sneak peek at the new animated film, Despicable Me 2. Check out her review!

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Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures.

The highly anticipated sequel to Despicable Me arrives in theatres today, and it has been well worth the four year wait. It’s sure to delight both you and your family as Gru and his minions are funnier and more endearing than ever.

We get a much different impression of Gru’s character in this movie than we did in the first, as Gru (voiced by Steve Carell) is now a devoted father and businessman who decides to join in the fight against evil. The fate of the world (and that of his loveable minions) is in his hands, and during his struggle to save it he discovers that (similar to the first movie) his heart is more open to love than he had originally thought.

The premise:

Gru is back as the quirky, laugh-inspiring protagonist we have grown to love, albeit this time his status as “villain” is undermined by his decision to join the Anti-Villain League in its pursuit of a mysterious, and dangerous, force of evil. A transmutation serum known as PX41 has been stolen from a laboratory in the Arctic, and the Anti-Villain League, led by director Silus Ramsbottom (voiced by Steve Coogan), implores Gru to help in its quest to retrieve the serum lest it fall into the wrong hands (which it does).

Gru, now a family man and proud purveyor of jellies and jams (which he produces with the help of his loyal minions), must juggle his new mission as a spy for the Anti-Villain League with being a father and enduring his daughters’ relentless efforts to find him a date.

With the help of his spy partner, Lucy Wilde (voiced by Kristin Wiig), Gru attempts to save the world from the destructive power of the serum and the villain who wields it, and along the way discovers he is not immune to yet another type of love: romantic.

What we loved:

This sequel to Despicable Me has a comical, heartwarming quality arguably even more pronounced than that of its predecessor; it will have you laughing out loud with its seemingly endless supply of humour, and might even make you shed heartfelt tears at the end.

If you loved Gru’s minions from the first movie, you will be extremely pleased with what Despicable Me 2 has in store for you: the minions play a more significant role in the sequel’s plot, and constitute a larger portion of the movie’s humour. They appear in a variety of hilarious outfits and costumes throughout, such as coconut bathing suits, shining armour, and golfing attire, and they speak in that quirky, ineffable language of theirs with greater regularity. Their antics are sure to inspire fits of laughter in both you and your children.

This movie’s villain (unlike Vector from Despicable Me) has a hilarious and adorable pet/guard chicken named Polito, who, like the minions, is sure to be entertaining for both you and your kids.

Another attractive, yet unexpected feature of the Despicable Me sequel is the romantic subplot; we are exposed to a whole new dimension of Gru’s character as he gradually comes to embrace his more romantic side.

Parental advisory (*potential spoilers*):

There are a few instances during the movie in which sexuality is hinted at or displayed. For instance, when Gru is in Eagle Hair Club he makes numerous thrusting motions with his hips since the serum-sensor he’s wearing is located near his crotch; a female pedestrian’s buttocks is accidentally slapped; one of Gru’s “dates” gets a tranquilizer dart shot into her buttocks; and the bare buttocks of one of the minions is fully displayed.

There are also a few scenes that children might find somewhat frightening. There’s a scene in which Gru incorrectly guesses the password of the villain’s secret lab and gets injured by multiple different weapons (including a mace and a large knife); and the creatures on whom the villain has used the transmutation serum might be a bit scary for children.

Canadian rating:

PG – Parental guidance suggested

Final verdict:

Despicable Me 2 is a great movie for you and your kids to see together this summer, as it is entertaining, uplifting, heartwarming, and will allow you to share countless laughs with each other. If your experience watching the movie is anything like mine was, you’ll be a little sad, or at least disappointed, when the end credits appear.

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