Film Review: “Minions: The Rise of Gru” (2022)

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Minions are such beloved characters that every kid and adult simply cannot look at them without a smile on their faces. Whether it’s Kevin, Bob, Stuart or even the entire Minions tribe – they all are adorable. Indeed, there is no good lesson they can provide nor teach children to be better. But through their innocent actions of trying to be the bad boys around, they rise above, beat their own version and do what is right – eventually.

Minions: The Rise of Gru takes us back to 1976, when an 11-year-old Gru not only dreams of becoming the most vicious villain but accepts the Minions as his helper, becoming their long-time leader. But before minions prove to be useful, Gru must pass his exam too – by getting a life-changing opportunity to feel what it’s like to don the shoes of supervillain Wild Knuckles – one of the members of Vicious 6. What happens to be just an innocent interview turns into a wild ride for Gru, minions and everyone involved as they get a chance at a rare opportunity to explore the area of their relationship Gru himself could not even imagine.

Let’s put it this way – this sequel offers the most humorous story that, I assure you, you won’t be able to rest from the non-stop laughter. It’s action-packed, extremely funny, has a great story and an excellent narrative that really makes sense. As for the minions, they could not be any funnier. The sequence with Master Chow (Michelle Yeoh), the former Kung Fu teacher, is ridiculously entertaining. As for the flight to San Francisco scenes – brace yourself; you have not seen a flight like this before.

It all starts when Wild Knuckles, the founder of Vicious 6, gets a stone linked to the Chinese Zodiac that promises immense power upon activation on the Chinese New Year. When Belle Bottom and the rest of the gang steal the stone from Wild Knuckles and throw him away, a vacant place becomes available. This is how Gru gets an invitation. But the newly appointed leader Belle Bottom did not realize that he’s just a boy and asks him to return unless he finds a way to impress her. That did not take much time, as he distracts Belle Bottom and steals the stone from right under her nose. This is when the wild ride begins, with such never-ending cute scenes that as soon as the film ends, you will run to watch it again.

The voice cast does not disappoint. Steve Carell as Gru is, as you can expect, right on the money. Whether it’s the adult or child Gru, Carell has no issues, either way, to voice the character in the only way possible. Pierre Coffin as Kevin, Stuart, Bob, Otto, and the rest of the minions is worth never forgetting. Taraji P. Henson spices up the animated film with her having voiced Belle Bottom. Michelle Yeoh receives a fitting part as Master Chow, an acupuncturist and Kung Fu fighter who helps the minions fulfil their duty and complete their quest successfully. Julie Andrews as Gru’s mother, was one of the best. But the surprise appearance of Jean-Claude Van Damme as Jean-Clawed, Rza, Lucy Lawless, Danny Trejo and Dolph Lundgren made it even better.

That being said, writer Matthew Fogel and director Kyle Balda turned “Minions: The Rise of Gru” into the funniest and most fulfilling piece to date. From start to end, it has charisma, knows how to connect with the audience and grabs their attention to the point where the meaning of life outside of cinema becomes irrelevant for the hour and a half journey. As for Gru and his rise, it was interesting to know how it all began, and the sequel offers a good explanation that will work for both kids and adults.

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