Despicable Me 2

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Frances Winston finds Despicable Me 2 witty and clever

Directed by: Pierre Coffin and Chris Renaud     Starring the voices of: Steve Carell, Russell Brand, Kristen Wiig, Benjamin Bratt, Steve Coogan, Ken Jeong, Miranda Cosgrove

I always thought it would be handy to have minions. The idea was planted in my head after the original Despicable Me movie, in which the little yellow workers stole the show, as they served the evil Gru (Steve Carell). And now they are back – as is everyone’s favourite anti-hero in this sequel to 2010’s Despicable Me. The formerly superbad Superdad has settled into a chaotic life of domesticity with his three adopted daughters. However, this new life lacks the excitement of his days as a super villain.

When he is asked to join the Anti-Villain League, a society dedicated to fighting crime on a global scale, by Lucy Wilde and Silas Ramsbottom (Wiig and Coogan) he is initially reticent. However, realising that legendary foe El Macho (Bratt) appears to be back on the scene, he reluctantly agrees to join their ranks. Paired with Lucy, the duo go undercover to try and discover the location of a secret serum that creates evil monsters. Unfortunately, they are both as inept as each other, and Gru finds juggling parenthood with spying increasingly difficult – especially when his girls start encouraging him to date.

He is so preoccupied with what’s going on in his life, that he doesn’t even notice when his minions start disappearing, but he is soon snapped back to reality when Lucy’s life is at stake, and he realises that he loves her – much to the delight of his daughters.

This film is incredibly witty, and gives the audience a laugh every few seconds. The writing is wonderful,  and the story manages to be more exciting that your usual animated fare. This is thanks, in no small part, to the assorted voice talents who all play their roles with gusto. You do find yourself feeling for Gru as he is torn between his newfound commitments as a family man, and his desire for some excitement in his life. As always his minions (who are due to get their own spin-off movie next year) are hilarious, and they have some of the funniest scenes in the film, despite speaking only gobbledegook.

This is one of those rare animations that you don’t need to borrow a child to go and see. While it is a brilliant family movie, adults will love it  just as much as the kids, and it really does have something for everyone. Hang on for a few minutes after the credits roll for footage of the ‘minion auditions’, which is inspired.

In cinemas now

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