During the mad holiday rush here at Rock Father HQ, a number of titles arrived that although featured in my gift guide and on my social networks, never got the proper feature that they deserved. Among those, DESPICABLE ME 2 stands out as a biggie – one that a lot of you might’ve found in your (or placed in someone else’s) stocking, judging from the record-breaking haul that found the movie becoming the best-performing animated title of all-time on Blu-ray in it’s opening week. While Steve Carell might be the high-dollar talent returning to voice the reformed villian, Gru, it’s the little, incomprehensible Minions that are the real stars here (and the studio knows it) – in a movie that’s interestingly enough, a celebration of fatherhood that was set-up in the first.
We’d seen the first DESPICABLE ME a few times thanks to an Academy Awards screener that somehow landed here in my pre-Rock Father days, so when the commercials for DESPICABLE ME 2 started airing, my oldest was already excited to see “the new Minion movie.” Yes, no matter how touching the story of the first, the main interest for the kids is the little Minions and whatever song-and-dance-fueled mischief they can muster. For me, I was conflicted about part 2 (turns out some of my peers were as well, albeit for several different reasons) because I sorta like cinematic villains. While the redemption of Gru was a fine note to end the first movie (as he takes up parenting three orphan girls), I wouldn’t be interested in seeing a full movie that features Megatron, Cobra Commander or Darth Vader as a “good guy.” Redemption, sure… but a whole tale that follows? That’s what we got with Gru, and while my first viewing brought me the enjoyment of watching my girls enjoy it, DM2 has been growing on me, and it’s the little moments… the tender moments, that feature Gru as a Dad that got me.
Overall, DESPICABLE ME 2 is multi-layered, and the kind of big-budget animated flick that’s designed for kids, but provides those little nudges that are clearly aimed toward the grownups in the crowd. While Gru’s main purpose in DM2 is to serve as a newly-recruited agent of the Anti-Villain League (which actually has a handbook that you can buy) we see him fall for his boss in a plot point that builds into another happy ending that’s bound to have a true “happily ever after…”
Until DESPICABLE ME 3 comes out, which I have a feeling could find this entire family teaming up to thwart some evil force, then merging into the territory of SPY KIDS meets THE INCREDIBLES… but with dancing, yellow Minions!
The Rock Father Rating: 3.5/5 Stars
Order DESPICABLE ME 2 (and part one) from my affiliate, Amazon: