The always lovable, evildoing, clueless (and scene-stealing) Minions in the very popular Despicable Me series return with their own prequel adventure, Minions. More an innocent trifle for the kiddies then anything, this is one spin-off movie with enough charm to win over fans and older audiences, even if it’s not the funniest or best film in the series.
The Minions have always had an insatiable desire to serve the most vilest and villainous throughout history, from prehistoric pea-brained dinosaurs to the most dangerous animal of them all: humans. The Minions take a special liking to these strange creatures and follow even the most villainous of the bunch, including Egyptian Pharaohs, Dracula, and Napoleon. Ultimately, the Minions decide to make a home for themselves in Antarctica – but their attempts at a leisurely life make them come face-to-face with the ultimate harbinger for bad ideas and nefarious deeds: boredom. The Minions become cogs to the machinations of their own society and their quest for a master begins.
Three plucky Minions, Stuart, Kevin, and Bob go out on a mission to find their new boss, leaving their icy abode on a search for someone nefarious and worthy of their services. They find themselves at the height of 60s fashion and culture: 1968 New York. Its here our hapless heroes discover an underground television channel where all villains are invited to Villain-Con in Orlando, Florida, where only the worst-of-the-worst congregate, including Scarlet Overkill (Sandra Bullock) the first female super villain, hell-bent on ruling the world. The Minions become enthralled with her charisma and confidence and win the opportunity to steal the crown from Queen Elizabeth II or death, with the help of weapons crafted from Overkill’s side-kick husband, Herb (Jon Hamm).
The rest, of course, is pretty much your standard animated comic fair. Overall, Minions offers plenty of funny situations and moments that fans should enjoy, and there’s rarely a dull moment. Still, there’s a certain something missing, possibly the pathos of Carell’s Gru and his adoptive daughters that added another dimension to earlier films, meaning these Gru-less Minions offers few surprises on their own. While hardly the best animated movie this year – or even the summer – there’s still a good time to be had hanging with the yellow guys as the film proves to be charming, cute, and funny – much like the yellow Minions themselves.