As the best thing about the Despicable Me films, you’d think the Minions would make for a great movie. Unfortunately, instead of creating some kind of fun origin story, which Minions starts to do, they just tell another story of how the minions worked for another uber villain. It’s much the same luke warm fun.
In Minions, little yellow guys Stuart, Kevin, and Bob, find Scarlett Overkill, the current villian of the day (in 1968), and they are tasked with stealing the crown of the Queen of England to prove themselves worthy of being her henchmen. And then I suppose that is intended to lead to world domination somehow.
Minions is a fun film, don’t get me wrong. But I can’t help but feel, like the Despicable Me films, that they never seem to reach their potential. They could be funnier, and they could certainly use some more depth of story. In Minions, they could have done more with the whole origin of minions and their misadventures through history. They give us the Cliff Notes version of that, and then we land in London, 1968, where the minions try to prove their worth to Scarlett Overkill, played by the voice of Sandra Bullock, who does a fine job voicing Scarlett. She seems to be relishing her role as a super villain, something she doesn’t get to do often.
Other voices include that of Michael Keaton, Jon Hamm, Allison Janney, Steve Coogan, Jennifer Saunders, and Steve Carrell briefly near the end. And not to forget, Pierre Coffin, the voice of the minions, also co-directs here. They all seem to be having a good time. And why not? It’s pretty easy work, in the grand scheme of things. Who wouldn’t love a job they could do over the phone and in their pajamas? Well, theoretically anyway.
I do love the voices of the minions, and their made up language. It’s a mash-up of nonsense and some occasional foreign language phrases that pop up now and again. When they do, it’s usually amusing. The minions are indeed at times funny, cute, endearing, and goofy. I just wish they were given a more interesting script.
It’s all mildly fun, and I could certainly recommend it to people with kids, and you’ll get some entertainment out of Minions, but it never reaches into greatness or absolute hilarity. A mere three kittenhands for the dimunitive yellow blokes in the blue overalls. It is a shame because I really do want to like the movie more, they just don’t give me enough reason to. But again, if you’re on a plane, or bored one afternoon, it’s worth a look. Hell, it’s better than Terminator Genisys, anyway.
~ Neil T. Weakley, your average movie-goer, waiting to see Ant Man, AND Mr. Holmes this week.