Minions  (2015)

I admit that a lot of the movies I do as part of this series are depressing or bleak or indie or just plain weird. Sometimes it's nice to step away from all that and just watch something that is pure mindless childish nonsense. "Minions" fit that entire description: nonsense, childish, mindless, and pure.

The Minions were first introduced in 2010's Despicable Me, and returned for the sequel three years later. The Minions were surprise hits in the first two movies, and the easiest way to satisfy the public demand was to just make a movie about them. Minions are apparently prehistoric, and have always existed purely to serve the most evil of masters. They run out of bad guys to help and the whole species falls into a depression. Kevin, Bob, and Stuart take up the mission to find the baddest boss in the world. The search leads them to New York circa 1968 where they find a new villainess to work for, who takes them to the United Kingdom.

Sandra Bullock plays Scarlet Overkill, and does a pretty good job. You could tell that she really let herself go, being able to act with just a voice and not having to worry about being seen. Jon Hamm is great as Scarlet's husband Herb; he's a total 1960s mod, super-skinny with a moptop hairdo, and he plays the voice with a perfect mix of smarm and sincerity. Allison Janney and Michael  Keaton play key smaller roles, and Geoffrey Rush is solid as the narrator. Steve Coogan (a favorite of mine) could have been given more to do, but other than that the rest of the supporting cast voiced well.

I know plenty of people who hate Minions, who are sick and tired of them, who get angry whenever they see one. I just see them as the movie equivalent of a kitten or puppy. Who can hate a kitten or puppy? Don't we all enjoy seeing animals do cutesy stuff on YouTube? I'm content watching those, just as I'm content watching anthropomorphic Twinkies play ping-pong.

Was this really a necessary movie? Nah. Was it a fun diversion for an hour and a half? Sure!  That's pretty much how I view Minions, as characters and as a movie: harmless fun.



On the [Celluloid Hero] scale, "Minions" gets a 5 out of 10.


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