Customer Review

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3.0 out of 5 stars great to look at but tries way too hard, July 22 2011
This review is from: Despicable Me (Version française) (DVD)
OK, don't get me wrong, I enjoyed Despicable Me a lot. This says a lot as I find Steve Carrell completely overrated as a "lead" comic actor (sorry, don't get the appeal at all of "The Office"). In this, though, the accent he comes up with to voice the "Despicable Me" character of Gru is brilliant. Visually the movie is very very cool with crazy-looking vehicles and just a sort of art deco look to the backdrops.

Yet ultimately there were some odd choices. I felt the mother character (voiced by Julie Andrews) was a waste. It was in there to explain how Gru became what he is but I felt it took valuable screen time away from what was fun about the movie--the relationship between Gru and the three orphan girls he adopts (one of which is voiced by comic genius-in-the-making iCarly's Miranda Cosgrove).

I also thought the cool freeze ray and shrink guns worked but the squid and piranha ray guns were jokes that fell super flat. Also, the massive weaponry set up to protect Gru's nemesis, Vector, was just dumb. Why not have something just as funny as the freeze or shrink ray? It's like the comic writers gave up half way through on that.

Throw in the fact this was made for 3D and there are plenty of 3D moments I found just in there for affect.

The little yellow minions are cute and fun. Maybe they needed no explanation but I was left throughout the movie wondering, what are they supposed to be--mini-Twinkies? Yellow Mexican jumping beans? Also, why did some have one eyeball and some two eyeballs. What was up with the strands of Homer Simpson hair on their heads? Why were there so many of them? What was up with the goggles, overalls and the whole welder look? Was it a parody of Flashdance or some Soviet era industrial joke?
These are not vital questions to know the answers to, and I do hate kids' movies that explain too much but could the writers not have given us something to chew on for that? I just thought the yellow minions, as funny as they were, were just plain out of sync with the whole "super villain living in the Boris Karloff-like home" vibe.

To top it off, the extras seem to want to sell you the video game for the movie (and also have a lame game on it you can play on your computer). The "Making Of" extra is pretty good, but even there they don't explain what the deal was with the minions?

Lastly, the title is terrible. Gru, if anything, is not "despicable" really. He's more a cartoon villain (well, it is a animation after all). The cover of the DVD has one of the minions front and center, but in the movie they are not the focus at all as they are more the comic relief.

I don't know. Like I said I enjoyed the movie but something was really off about the whole thing such that it doesn't quite take the leap and enter the upper echelons like the Pixar flicks or Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs do.
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Reviewer

Brian Maitland
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   

Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada

Top Reviewer Ranking: 249