When the original Despicable Me first debuted, it quickly became one of my favorite animated movies of all time, and certainly my favorite non-Disney and non-Pixar entry.
Sequels tend to be a mixed bag, they generally don’t capture me as much as the original films. But I knew I didn’t have to love this one as much as the first to enjoy it.
Despicable Me 2 had to find a bit of a bite to it, as Gru (voiced by Steve Carrell) had been a dastardly villain and now is a family man to three young girls, Margo (Miranda Cosgrove), Edith (Dana Gaier) and the adorable Agnes (Elsie Fisher). Margo is a teenager just discovering her hormones, and Agnes longs for a mother. All three are actually ready for Gru to find a mom for them (and a partner for himself), although he’s never had success with women. What he has had success with is assembling the Minions, who are featured more prominently than in the first film (but I don’t think overused).
Gru is now using his laboratory for making…jelly. Fortunately, he’s soon wrangled by an attractive and high-strung agent named Lucy (Kristen Wiig) from the Anti-Villain League to help save the world. Gru and Lucy meet the owner of a Mexican restaurant owner named Eduardo (Benjamin Bratt), who Gru is convinced is a villain formerly known as El Macho. Gru and Lucy go through great lengths to prove the connection, although the head of the Anti-Villain League, Silas Ramsbottom (Steve Coogan) is not convinced and ends up putting Lucy on a new assignment…to Australia. Gru and Lucy have been falling for each other without realizing the other was also enamored, and the plane ride to Australia is more eventful than she anticipated.
If you enjoy Minions, you’ll not be disappointed. They are featured throughout, and I especially laughed at pop culture references. At one point, many of them are turned into “Evil” purple Minions, but it was apparent we’d get back all of our yellow, banana-loving Minions by the time the film was over.
One of my favorite scenes from the film is when Gru hires a princess to show up for little Agnes’s birthday party. The princess fails to arrive, and Gru stuffs himself into an outfit and hilariously plays the part himself. Agnes lets him know she realizes he’s not a princess, but appreciates the thought.
I laughed throughout Despicable Me 2, and turned to Jeff as it ended to say that I wanted to see it again. This is a fun family film that both children and adults can enjoy. I had hoped for 2 family films this weekend (Despicable Me 2 and The Lone Ranger), but am having to settle for just one.
If you have 3D glasses, stay for the end credits – the Minions have some great 3D gags.
Check out our yellow carpet interviews of Miranda Cosgrove, Dana Gaier and Elsie Fisher from last year’s Despicable Me Minion Mayhem opening at Universal Studios Orlando! I also have an article about the Grand Opening with photos of the actresses and event.