'Despicable' sequel disappoints

This weekend, the University Programs Council is bringing “Despicable Me 2” to the Newcomb Theater. Though the first “Despicable Me” movie was cute and enjoyable to watch for the most part, those attending this weekend’s showing expecting the trend to continue with the sequel will be disappointed.

“Despicable Me 2,” featuring the vocal talents of Steve Carell, Miranda Cosgrove and Kristen Wiig, picks up shortly after the first film left off. Gru (Carell), has given up his evil ways and chosen to become a full-time dad to the three young girls, Margo, Agnes and Edith, in addition to expanding his jam business. Suddenly, Gru is taken captive by Lucy Wilde (Wiig), who is a part of the Anti-Villain League and claims that they need his help in solving the mystery of a stolen arctic laboratory.

The prime suspect is El Macho, a Mexican restaurant owner whose teenage son is the object of attraction for Margo, much to Gru’s dismay. Amidst this and the growing mutual attraction between Gru and Lucy, Gru fails to notice that his minions have been disappearing one by one.

At first, the movie is reminiscent of its predecessor — cute and able to gather chuckles from the audience with clever jokes from Gru and comical outbursts from the minions — but as the movie proceeds, the antics and the accents become less funny and more tiresome. Gru’s minions, small yellow monsters with high-pitched voices, are overused here, and they provide the film with a slew of cheap jokes. By the end of it, I found myself falling away from the actual plot because I was so annoyed by the repetitiveness of the humor.

But even the plot falls flat, as is the case with many sequels. Gru, no longer equipped with a villainous attitude, has become tame and boring. In order for a sequel to succeed, it is completely necessary to further the plot, resolve unanswered questions, or even showcase a backstory like the much more successful “Monsters University” did this summer. “Despicable Me 2” accomplishes none of these things and essentially creates a whole new story with little consistency other than the heinous nature of the minions.

Published October 15, 2013 in Arts and Entertainment, tableau

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