College Reviews – Minions

Minions was without a doubt the biggest piece of garbage I have ever seen. It’s clear that this Despicable Me spin-off was only created to feed off of the wallets of millions of parents around the globe.

Now I understand that minions are supposed to be loveable little dunagrees-clad yellow cylinders targeted at children, but from a more matured perspective, the film was not five star worthy. Minions is an animated family comedy (I’m using that word loosely) prequel to the Despicable Me films. It tells the story of how the minions have (unfortunately) existed since the beginning of time, their only purpose to serve the most nefarious animals and people. Except because they’re so stupid they end up killing almost every single one of their bosses, so they isolate themselves in Antartica (I wish the merchandise would do the same) and go into a depression until 1968. At that time, three motivated minions, Kevin, Stuart and Bob (all voiced by Pierre Coffin), set out to find a new master and end up in Orlando, Florida, at Villain-Con, a convention where all the supervillains gather, and become henchmen for Scarlet Overkill (Sandra Bullock). Kevin tells the isolated minions to meet them in London, and Scarlet tells the trio to steal Queen Elizabeth’s (Jennifer Saunders) crown. As they follow her orders, Bob, in order to protect himself, pulls Excalibur from a stone and is crowned king of England. Scarlet is furious and tries to kill the minions, but her plans backfire and eventually a young Gru (Steve Carell) takes the crown for himself, with the minions considering him their new master. There, I wrote out the plot so that no one has to waste their money or 91 minutes of their life on this bore.

The whole Despicable Me/Minions franchise to me just seems like one big insult to women wrapped in a compliment. For instance, Coffin, who is also one of the directors, said in an interview that none of the minions are girls because “seeing how dumb and stupid they often are, he can’t imagine them being girls”. Most people’s response to this would probably be a nod of the head and shrugging it off as boys will be boys, but I say paha. To me that’s just saying that boys are allowed to get away with stupid and dumb behaviours whilst girls are not.

I also found Scarlet Overkill’s first scene to be questionable. She enters by flying in from behind a screen with the bottom part of her dress transformed into a rocket and flies over the crowd. As she does this, the camera angle turns to a birds-eye view and she flies up to the camera, readjusts her dress over her bust, and lands. Why? What was the point of making her the focal point if it’s just meant to establish her sexuality? Directors, Coffin and Kyle Balda, could have done something far more interesting, such as made her give an evil smile or wave to the camera in order to break the fourth wall and make the audience feel like they’re a part of the strange minion universe; it would have been more interesting than just to give more of an adult undertone to the parents in the audience.

I also blame writer Brian Lynch for part of the reason as to why this film is so bad. Not only do the random outbursts of words such as “banana” irritate me to the moon and back, lines like “need tiny waist” said by Scarlet as she tries to squeeze into a corset does nothing but aggravate me even more. This puts the idea in all young girls heads (who will most likely be looking up to her instead of the minions since they’re all male) that you should be skinny no matter what it takes. The young girls watching might not realise it, but the idea has been subconsciously planted, waiting to hatch as soon as puberty strikes, whilst the boys are free to run around like idiots.

I would just like to take a moment to thank everyone who was involved in making this awful franchise – I have never hated anything as strongly as I hate the minions. But with the merchandise everywhere you turn, wouldn’t you be sick of it too? Don’t blame me, blame Universal. It truly is despicable (see what I did there?).

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