Thursday, July 15, 2010

Despicable Me: Review

Despicable Me! Or... 1 hour 30 minutes of despicable cuteness!
So, Despicable Me was made by the same team who did Horton Hears A Who! and it takes place in a world where super villain is a legal profession and centers on Gru, who at one time was the greatest super villain in the world but begins to lose out to a younger villain who looks like Bill Gates. So Gru decides to pull off the greatest heist in history by stealing the moon. But to do that he needs to break into his nemesis' fortress and steal a shrinking ray. So Gru adopts and enlists three orphan girls to help him do so but develops a strong father-daughter relationship with the girls.
This film seems like a really enjoyable one on paper but did not gel well at all when I was watching it. Despicable Me poorly handles the different sub-plots of the movie, which were fun to watch on their own rights but fail to connect together in overall perspective. Lack of focus on one particular storyline gives audience less of a chance to latch on to specific plot.
I don't think the movie knows what it wants to be about itself. Is it a heartwarming film between Gru and the girls in an all Grinch like fashion? Or is it an underdog flick of Gru trying to rise above his nemesis? Two perfectly good themes on their own but it really really didn't mix well. It was like watching two different movies played by the same actors.
And this film shouldn't have worked if it wasn't for the outstanding tongue-in-cheek comedy that was just so cute to watch. If I was to describe Despicable Me in one word, it would be cute. The film overlays itself on cuteness from the minute the reel starts rolling and there wasn't a moment in the cinema that I was not smiling. They didn't have jokes that were outlandishly funny but the film was consistently chuckle-worthy.
And amidst the poorly designed characters in the film. The two persona's that truly stands out in here was Gru and those yellow minions. Who knew one-eyed yellow balls would be so entertaining to watch. It's almost as if some fucked up scientist went back in time and cloned the Three Stooges but screwed up the cloning process and they all turned out to be little yellow balls. Those guys had me chuckling my guts out through the film. I predict these guys are gonna become McD Happy Meals, plush toys and bolsters for years to come.
And I gotta hand it to Steve Carell who plays Gru. What a fantastic job this guy did here. Gru is what I would describe as an odd crossover of Bela Lugosi and KHAAAAN! Carell's performance is so over the top, so outlandish, some what of a throwback to old school 90's cartoon villains that it was absolutely a joy to watch. Which proved to be a weakness for the father-daughter storyline of the film because we just can't buy Gru's character loving these girls cause he's just such a lovable jackass.
So what did I think of this movie? Well compared to How To Train Your Dragon and Toy Story 3, Despicable Me has a shit chance of making it into the Academy's nomination list. But it is pure good cinema fun.

RATING: 7/10

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