Newest Review: ... It's predominately aimed at children, but it's enjoyable for all the family. After getting this on DVD, I coerced my parents and old... more
It's not Gru..some
Despicable Me (DVD)
Member Name: darren55
Despicable Me (DVD)
Advantages: A brilliant cartoon
Despicable me is a Universal pictures 3D cartoon about the world of a neferious super villain called Gru, Gru voiced by Steve Carrell is an evil mastermind who enjoys stealing world landmarks. He has a strong Eastern European accent in the very best Disney evil scientist way, has a large head and body and very spindly thin legs. Gru is a classic Bond style super villain; he starts the film using his special weapons to get to the front of the queue at Starbucks and pops children's balloons. He differs slightly from most Bondesque villains in that his lair is in a normal American suburb, despite having dead grass and a love of the colour dark and brooding, and he dreams of being known as the number one super villain.
However, his choice of crimes indicates a desire to be the worst of the worst but in reality he only steals things which cause little or no pain to the populace. This straightforward comfortable life is startled by the discovery that the pyramids have been replaced by a blow up version, everyone assumes Gru is responsible for the crime but the true culprit is a new super villain called Vector, Vector is a nerd who loves cookies and wears garish orange jumpsuits. Vector has a shrink gun which Gru needs for his last chance to make a big splash in the world of super villainy.
Gru voiced by Steve Carrell with a bit of Russian oligarch and a hint of German accents from Fifties war films, spots an opportunity when he spies Vector allowing a trio of orphan girls in to take orders for cookies. A plan is hatched but Gru needs the little girls as delivery girls for a new range of cookie robots. With the entry of the three little girls the film enters traditional Hollywood fare of exposing a villain to a better and more inclusive life and Gru doesn't change the girls but the girls change Gru.
The girls are of course the counterpoint to making a villain as the centre of the film, they are cute, intelligent and resourceful. They are the pivotal point of the film, with them we are introduced to the softer side of Gru and through their actions make him more accountable for his super villainy and of course make him think about his lifestyle.
The film ends spectacularly and is a visual treat for those who love the new breed of cartoons and as a father of two boys this is one of the more enjoyable cartoons. It has so far taken over How to Train your Dragon as my favourite of the DVD's we have in the house, far more enjoyable than having to sit through Madagascar again.
The film has several aspects which make the viewing far more pleasurable than other children's DVD's, one is the accent of Gru a lovely gravelly European/Germanic slightly menacing. There are the actions of Gru's little yellow helpers called the Minions, they give the film a humorous physical comedy angle and as they can't really speak can be used as emotion indicators. They are also the focus of Dr. Nefarious (Gru's Chief Scientist) many rather unpleasant experiments, the Fart gun was one of my favourites and is obviously a parody of Q from the Bond films.
Other enjoyable aspects are the colourful and dynamic background colours, the little section where a young Gru shows his rocket to the moon to his mum, whose only acknowledgement is a kind of grunt. The film is funny, energetic, and does have the sense of Shrek about it. In fact with increased watching the feel of a super villain Shrek increased, not only does Gru have some of the same facial expressions and the focus of the film being a bad guy but there is a similar plotline to the Shrek franchise.
All in all, very enjoyable and there should be plenty of opportunities to make a sequel so we can continue exploring the world of Gru. My favourite little gag in the film is when Gru goes to the bank; he gets through using eyeball recognition and enters the bank for real. In big letters is the name of the bank "The Bank of Evil" and in little letters just underneath it says "Formerly Lehman Brothers". I told you I've watched the film too often, Lehman brothers is the bank in the US which sparked of the current credit crisis.
The DVD comes with 3 short stories in the world of Gru as well as the usual options to listen to the makers talk about the film and a little game involving the little yellow Minions.
I'm hoping for a sequel.
Summary: Really funny