The Minions are back invading our cinema screens. Gru and the girls, along with these adorable yellow creatures, are faced up with new challenges and problems.
Let me break down the plot of this movie into several parts. First, there is a dangerous serum that turns cute animals to violent, purplish creatures. This is picked up by the Anti Villain League (AVL), a secret organization (talking about adding the spy-touch to a cartoon) that asks Gru to track the mastermind behind the serum. The infamous evil-turned-good genius is then paired up with another agent named Lucy Wilde. From here emerges the second story arc: falling in love… in a very interesting way. Meanwhile, Gru is also striving to be a good father to our favorite girls Margo, Edith, and Agnes. These girls are having their own challenges as well. For instance, Margo is starting to be interested in boys, but Gru is not happy with this.
These sub-stories are intertwined in such a way that is very enjoyable and pleasing to watch without much thinking. The story is light and easy to follow, a huge guilty pleasure. Of course, since this movie is an animation, there is a lot of humour to it, too. Even though the jokes are more intended for younger children, older audiences still can't help but laugh along.
Give most of the credits to the minions. They have substantially more screen time than they did on the previous movie and almost all of the funny and miscellaneous things on the movie are due to these little creatures. When they played pranks on each other, we laughed. When a minion was so clumsy something hilarious happened, we laughed. When several were on a "mission" to help Gru take down the bad guy, there would always be something comical, and we laughed. Even their mere appearances—yellow, cylinder-like, big eyes (of assorted number), wearing blue worker clothes—and unique language we can't handle. They are just too cute and adorable and jovial we wish they were real. Oh, they also have ordinary names—Dave, Stuart, Kevin, and so on. I couldn't help myself trying to identify which minion was who during the movie. I have officially turned into a Minion fan.
Additionally, I couldn't help falling in love with the other characters. Bravo to Steve Carell for portraying Gru in the best way possible. There is that love-hate relationship; Gru is lovable but sometimes annoying. Ultimately, Gru is just trying to be a good parent. I shall probably mention Dr. Nefario (voiced by Russell Brand) as well, Gru's assistant. He's that wicked, eccentric British smart guy whom we love. And the girls have always been on the spotlight. They look similar (like how sisters should be) but have different personalities (again, like how sisters should be). Margo is mature, Edith is brave, and Agnes is loving. It's really hard to dislike these girls.
However, a major weakness to this movie is that it lacks meaningful message. I have always identified animated movies with life lessons and precious morals (take Finding Nemo, Toy Story, and How to Train Your Dragon). Despicable Me 2, like its predecessor, doesn't have this touch. I didn't get much after watching this movie. Despite its "family-movie" label, I couldn't find any "family value". It's becoming a problem for me that these days animated movies only appeal to the humour and visuals, not to the message behind.
All in all, Despicable Me 2 is a very entertaining film. Definitely a must-watch for this winter break. It is blissful, cute, and fun. It makes us feel good. And the Minions are the real gems. Ultimately, this movie is fit for those seeking for hilarious movies with simple plots that require little thinking. I give the movie 3.5 out of 5.