Minions: Utterly Ridiculous, Utterly Absurd, Utterly Enjoyable
Allison JanneyJon Hamm...
3DAction & Adventure...
Kyle BaldaPierre Coffin
In 1 Cinema
Following the seemingly unbridled success of the Despicable Me films, a Minions spin off was inevitable. The yellow Tic-Tac shaped rascals, despite essentially being background characters to Gru and co, were by far the most striking and memorable visual of the Illumination Entertainment franchise.
Acting as a prequel, the very notion of a standalone minions film doesn’t quite register – not only are they background characters, but they also don’t speak. Luckily, however, the film is conceived in the real world, with our heroes even interacting with historical figures.
The story goes like this; the minions are a race that has existed on earth for millions of years and have one sole goal in life – to serve the needs of super-villains. Throughout time, they have worked for the Pharaohs, Napoleon and even Dracula amongst others, but their unrelenting devotion to their master is undermined by one thing; their adorable incompetence. You see, they have a habit of accidentally killing each and every one of their adoptive leaders.
A subsequent crisis in confidence sees the minions make Antarctica their new home, where their lack of villainous endeavours eventually prompts a minion named Kevin to travel to Villain-Com – the world’s most prestigious convention for super-villains.
Hoping to find a new leader, Kevin is joined by fellow minions, Bob and Stuart, and wind up lining up behind the world’s first female super-villain, Scarlet Overkill – ably voiced by Sandra Bullock – who takes them to the UK for their first mission.
Boasting a cast that also includes a resurged Michael Keaton, an underused John Hamm and other familiar names, Minions is an utterly goofy film – and that’s why it’s hard to really condemn it in any real analytical way. As the film’s eponymous characters have come to embody, this film is cutesy and silly in the best of ways.
There’s something to be said for the lack of any real arc or engaging character-relationships, but the sheer ridiculousness of it all, the many pop-culture references and kitschy soundtrack all come together to meet expectations. This is far from a perfect film when compared to the likes of Toy Story, Shrek, et al, but there was no other way to approach a film based on a race of miniature, yellow pill-shaped creatures than complete and utter absurdity.
The film eventually comes to hint at and vaguely explains the connection between Minions and Despicable Me which holds a certain satisfaction in itself, but this will certainly satisfy minion-fans, if not particularly wow the rest of us.