Let’s establish a single, basic fact regarding Minions which opens Friday (July 10) on area screens. This isn’t an animated film that operates on multiple levels, a bar that most movies in the genre aspire.
This is nothing but pure silliness meant to tempt children with fart jokes and general mayhem. There’s little there for adults, but you know what? That’s OK.
Sometimes it’s a good thing to be able to just go to a flick and be a kid, especially in the case of Minions, little blobs of yellow that live only to serve super villains. In two Despicable Me films, the mush mouthed bespectacled servants, stole the show from their boss Grue and even the cute, adorable girls he adopted and grew to love.
Now they get the chance to see if they can carry a movie. Yes, they can barely. Make no mistake about it, Minions is threadbare with respect to plot, but it also possesses enough on-screen hits to make it worth the time for the wee ones and grown folks who have no problem abandoning all pretense of adulthood and just kicking back and enjoying.
In this origin story set in 1968, Minions Kevin, Stuart and Bob brave several big cities including New York and London in search of a villain to serve. After traveling to Villain Con in a pre-Disneyfied Orlando (translation: nothing by swamp and shacks), they meet Scarlet Overkill (voice by Sandra Bullock) and they win the opportunity to work with her and her husband Herb (voice by Jon Hamm).
Scarlet owns but one desire – to become queen of England. Given that the gig is taken, it becomes up to her henchmen – the Minions – to help.
If silliness isn’t your thing, Minions is likely to be tortuous, making it a hit that you take to spend time with the children in your life. However, for those remotely into the characters, it’s a little slice of wackiness that pleases.
It doesn’t hurt that the movie’s creators have a keen appreciation for ‘60s-era rock with an unapologetic bias toward the British Invasion stuff.
Minions isn’t on the level of most animated films, but it knows what it is and which audience it serves. Self-awareness isn’t a bad thing in this case.
Director: Kyle Balda, Pierre Coffin
Cast: Sandra Bullock, Jon Hamm, Michael Keaton, Allison Janney, Steve Coogan
Rated: Rated PG for action and rude humor
Running time: 91 minutes
George’s rating: 3-of-5 stars
Check for theaters and showtimes at Atlas Cinemas, Cleveland Cinemas, Fandango.com and MovieTickets.com