Movie Review: ‘MINIONS’ Continue to Charm in the Adorable Prequel

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Susan Kamyab // Contributing Writer


MINIONS | 91 min | PG
Director: Kyle Balda and Pierre Coffin
Cast: Sandra Bullock, Jon Hamm, Michael Keaton, Allison Janney, Steve Coogan and Pierre Coffin

We all loved the villain-worshiping Minions from the hilarious DESPICABLE ME films, but can the Twinkie-looking creatures succeed in starring in their own animated feature? Parents and children rest easy, because the Minions triumph in their leading roles.

As we see in the beginning of the film, Minions have been around for centuries and were born to serve a “despicable” master. Finding a leader was easy, but keeping one seemed to be a problem, as death would quickly follow them. Eventually the Minions have no one to serve and manage to live a “normal life” amongst themselves. Unfortunately, not being able to oblige their true purpose in life has made them feel weary and restless.

Though we see ALL the hundreds of Minions (voiced by co-director Pierre Coffin), we focus on the three hoping to save the group from a meaningless life. Kevin, Stuart and Bob set out to find a new evil master. It isn’t long before they are recruited by the devious super-villain Scarlet Overkill (voiced by Sandra Bullock). But before they can rejoice in the fact that they’ve found a new master and home for their family, they must complete one evil task: steal The Queen of England’s crown so that Scarlet may take over the world! And if they fail to complete this mission, they’ll be destroyed.

The Minions and Scarlett Overkill (Sandra Bullock) in MINIONS. Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures.

The Minions and Scarlett Overkill (Sandra Bullock) in MINIONS. Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures.

Unlike DESPICABLE ME, the plot of MINIONS is thin and there isn’t much depth to the story. However, they do squeeze a lot of lemonade with the one lemon their given. We’re introduced to many new, fun characters, some of whom are voiced by Michael Keaton, Allison Janney and Jon Hamm. And yes, you will see a young Gru and find out just how the Minions met their MOST despicable master.

The simple premise is stretched out for a duration of 91 fully entertaining minutes. Maybe it’s the fast pace story-line. Maybe it’s the laughable, slapstick comedy. Or, maybe it’s that these little yellow guys are just so darn cute that you can’t help but enjoy watching them no matter what. I can’t really pinpoint it.

MINIONS doesn’t offer much besides a good time and some chuckles for the audience. Ultimately, it’s interesting to see the origins of Gru’s ever so loyal Minions and find out how they came to meet. For the parents who want to take their kids to the theater this weekend, MINIONS is not only a safe choice, but it’s a delightful, fun-loving animated film.

MINIONS opens today.

About author

Preston Barta

I have been working as a film journalist since 2010, dividing the first four years between radio broadcasting and entertainment writing in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. In 2014, I entered Fresh Fiction (FreshFiction.tv) as the features editor. The following year, I stepped into the film critic position at the Denton Record-Chronicle, a daily North Texas print publication. My time is dedicated to writing theatrical film reviews, at-home entertainment columns, and conducting interviews with on-screen talent and filmmakers, as well as hosting a podcast devoted to genre filmmaking (called My Bloody Podcast). I've been married for seven happy years, and I have one son who is all about dinosaurs just like his dad.