Gru, the girls, and the Minions are back in this blockbuster sequel. Is it worth its nigh one billion dollar worldwide gross? Well, let’s take a look at it!
The film focuses on Gru as he adjusts to life as a normal, law-abiding, father to his three girls. He actually does a pretty good job in this endeavor.
He tries to make a living to support them all by selling different types of homemade jams and jellies. This endeavor is not so successful.
But his normal life is soon interrupted when he’s kidnapped by and forced to work for the Anti-Villain League, or AVL, for short. The AVL is an international group of spies who monitor villains across the world and notice when they pull off a master plan. Recently, a super villain has stolen a top-secret serum that is able to transform creatures into killing machines.
The problem is that they don’t know who stole it; they only know that the villain is a store owner of a local mall. So, they recruit Gru to work for them since he himself used to be a villain and would know how a villain works/thinks. And the rest of the film is about Gru working undercover in the mall trying to uncover the villain, all the while dealing with a budding romance.
The film is actually quite enjoyable and surprisingly funny. Steve Carell returns as the voice of Gru and does as amazing job as he did in the first film! Kristen Wiig returns as well, this time playing a new character, Lucy. Lucy is another agent of the AVL who’s been chosen to be Gru’s partner in the case and the person with whom Gru falls in love. Kristen Wiig brings out the “Lola Bunny” in Lucy making her extremely enjoyable as well as making her romance with Gru somewhat believable.
How do the other voice actors hold up? Well, the actresses who voiced the three girls are back and this is where I find a problem. Miranda Cosgrove as Margo doesn’t do too bad of a job. But the other two have aged 3 years since the previous movie, so their voices totally don’t match the ages that their characters are supposed to be. Remember how cute Agnes sounded in the first film? Well now, she still says cute things but the cute voice is missing, thereby making it quite disturbing and not as enjoyable. And Edith’s voice actress is a teen which also doesn’t mesh well with the age that Edith is supposed to be.
A controversial casting decision made in this film was when Al Pacino was replaced by Benjamin Bratt for a character known as Eduardo. And I, like everyone else, was upset that Al Pacino was replaced, but when I saw the character of Eduardo, I feel that the replacement was a good one. I don’t feel as if Al Pacino would’ve done a good voice-acting role with the character that he was supposed to portray, so all seems to end well.
What about the animation? Well, it’s enjoyable and can be quite good at times, sometimes even eerie!
The story though tends to take too many unnecessary turns and twists and detracts from the main plot many times. For example, there’s a brief scene where Agnes has to practice reciting a passage for a Mother’s Day Pageant, but that isn’t referenced again until the end. There’s a scene where Gru goes on a date set up by his local matchmaking neighbor. And Margo even falls in love with and gets dumped by a boy! They’re all interesting, but very pointless to the big picture!
It’s for these reasons that I say that “Despicable Me” was better and that I don’t feel this film deserved to gross nigh a billion dollars. But don’t misunderstand me! If you haven’t seen this film, go and see it ASAP!
(P.S. Lucy’s phone number in the film is given as 626-584-5723. Why not give it a call?)