So much for following a schedule.
Anyone who knows Collin and me knows we're totally devoted fans of those delightful little yellow sidekicks of former supervillain Gru (Steve Carell) in the Despicable Me animated movies. No way could we wait until Collin's next day off to see the loveable Minions in their own movie. So when he managed to get off early yesterday, we headed for Ronnies 20 and made it in time for the 4:05 showing. I wonder why everyone assumed we were there for Minions...could it have been the Minions T-shirts and caps? Or maybe it was the eight plush Minions we brought along? (I told Collin we should have brought all of them. We would have made the evening news!)
We've developed something of a reputation for causing weather mishaps by going to the movies. There was the tornado the night we went to see Captain America: The Winter Soldier...the freak lighting storm when we saw Guardians of the Galaxy...the downpour when we saw Jurassic World...just to name a few. Well, the curse has been broken! Yesterday it was bright and sunny when we entered the theater and when we left! Yay!
I was not at all surprised by the number of adults without children in the theater. Sometimes I think the Minions have more adults than children among their fans. For the unenlightened, Minions are cute, funny, easily distracted, and have a special fondness for potty humor and photocopying their butts. They laugh a lot. And they're absolutely loyal. Picture a bunch of hyperactive toddlers. Yep, that's the Minions!
This movie explains the origins of the Minions (voiced by Pierre Coffin) from single-cell organisms at the beginning of time, emerging to serve their first master--a T-Rex. Minions were created to serve--but, as narrator Geoffrey Rush explains, finding a master is easy. Keeping one is another story. They almost immediately cause the demise of the T-Rex...and it's all downhill from there. From dropping a pyramid on the Pharaoh to waking Dracula for an early morning birthday surprise involving sunlight to inadvertently aiming a cannon at Napoleon, the well-meaning Minions prove a hazard to villains throughout time. Finally, they go into hiding in an ice cave in Antarctica. Over time, however, they become deeply depressed by their lack of purpose. Kevin, the leader of the tribe and the smartest of the Minions (which isn't saying much, really), realizes they may not survive. He decides to leave the ice caves and go out into the world to find the Minions a new master.
Accompanied by then-teenager Stuart and youngster Bob, he sets off on a journey that lands the trio in New York City in the '60s. While trapped in a mall overnight, they see a TV ad for Villain-Con (Comic-Con, anyone?) and decide to go there to find a new master. They hitch a ride to Orlando with a family of bank robbers (Michael Keaton and Allison Janney voice the parents). There, while attempting to rescue his teddy bear in a mob of eager villains, Bob ends up winning a competition to serve the world's first female supervillain, Scarlet Overkill (Sandra Bullock). She and her inventor husband, Herb (Jon Hamm), take the Minions home to their castle.
Is it just me, or is Scarlet possibly Universal and Illumination's single-finger salute to Disney? A female supervillain who's gone the evil route because she was denied her childhood dreams of being a princess....a castle that looks suspiciously like the one at Disney World....
Scarlet orders the Minions to steal the crown of the Queen of England. She wants to be Queen, and plans to take over the country. Herb equips them with some of his inventions, and they nearly succeed...until an attempt by little Bob to save himself and his buddies from the palace guards fulfills an ancient legend and Bob is declared King (think Excalibur). Scarlet is furious and accuses the Minions of betrayal. They immediately give her the crown and declare her Queen, but she responds by imprisoning them. They escape, and while their fellow Minions travel the world to find them, the trio look for a way to stop Scarlet. Do they succeed? Will they ever be reunited with the rest of the tribe? And how do they meet Gru, who will be their master for many, many years to come? Minions answers all of these questions.
The movie is fast-paced, frantic, and fun. Though some reviewers have found the script to be "uneven," I disagree. I think there's a possibility that Scarlet and Herb could return in a future movie--Despicable Me 3 is scheduled for 2017, so maybe then....
Whether you have kids or not, I happily recommend this one. Laughter is healthy, and Minions is just what the doctor ordered!