These “transfer” reviews are from when I only did reviews on my Facebook page back in 2015. Bare in mind when reading these, I didn’t have the same formula in my review writing that I do now, and my usual “who starred and who directed” information is completely absent, so everything “italicized” is new. With that said, enjoy this review from 2015.
For those of you living under a rock this past decade, let me bring you up to speed about this movie. The yellow pint-sized, gibberish-spouting minions were a part of the DESPICABLE ME animated movies, starring Steve Carrell. The minions were the hilariously faithful henchman for Carrell’s character, Gru, an evil genius bent on world domination. The movie was popular enough to warrant a sequel, DESPICABLE ME 2, which was also a success. Now while the movie’s human characters were cutsie and memorable enough, it’s clear the most popular characters from both films were the minions. Fast-forward to two years later, and now the minions have their own spin-off movie. Despite not having seen the second film, I decided to check this out in hopes for a decent laugh.
Starring: Pierre Coffin (all 3 Despicable Me films and the upcoming MINIONS 2 ), Sandra Bullock (OUR BRAND IS CRISIS , THE LAKE HOUSE , SPEED , and upcoming films OCEAN’S 8  and BIRD BOX ), and Jon Hamm (NOSTALGIA , KEEPING UP WITH THE JONESES , THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL , WE WERE SOLDIERS , and upcoming films BEIRUT  and TAG )
Support: Michael Keaton (AMERICAN ASSASSIN , SPOTLIGHT , CARS , JACK FROST , BATMAN , and the upcoming DUMBO ), Allison Janney (I, TONYA , SPY , JUNO , and 10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT YOU ), Steve Coogan (DESPICABLE ME 3 , TROPIC THUNDER , THE INDIAN IN THE CUPBOARD , and upcoming films HOT AIR  and STAN AND OLLIE ), Jennifer Saunders (SING , CORALINE , MUPPETS TREASURE ISLAND , and the upcoming PATRICK ), and Geoffrey Rush (PIRATES: DEAD MEN , FINDING NEMO , MYSTERY MEN , and the upcoming STORM BOY )
Directors: Kyle Balda (DESPICABLE ME 3, THE LORAX , and upcoming films MINIONS 2  and DESPICABLE ME 4 ) and Pierre Coffin (all 3 Despicable Me movies). Writer: Brian Lynch (THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS , PUSS IN BOOTS , HOP , and upcoming films THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS 2  and MINIONS 2 ). Composer: Heitor Pereira (THE NUT JOB 2 , IF I STAY , BEVERLY HILLS CHIHUAHUA , and upcoming films SHOW DOGS  and SMALLFOOT ). Editor: Claire Dodgson (DESPICABLE ME 3, THE LORAX, and the upcoming MINIONS 2)
Story on top (spoilers), review on the bottom.
Minions have been on Earth since the dinosaurs roamed the earth, and started off in the ocean, seeking to serve the most threatening brute. However, their boss has always been eaten or killed in some way and they either serve that creature, or they move on to find another. It wasn’t until humans came along where they found potential. Over the course of time, they have been constantly bouncing from one boss to another, always failing to be decent henchmen, until one failure drives them to a harsh winter environment to be alone. Although they created a home for themselves, the minions grew to be depressed as they had no master to serve. This all changed as soon one minion by the name of Kevin (voiced by Pierre Coffin) made a stand and vowed to re-enter the harsh world and find the minions a new master. Knowing he couldn’t do it alone, he needed volunteers. Stuart (voiced by Pierre Coffin, again) was volunteered by his peers, and Bob (voiced by Coffin, yeah, he’s the voice for every single minion), whom was young but energetic and enthusiastic, both hopped on board for this adventure. Their travels eventually take them to New York. With no luck, but a new set of overalls for them and a teddy bear that Bob names Tim, the trio catch word of a secret convention taking place in Orlando, Florida of villains, including the infamous Scarlet Overkill (voiced by Sandra Bullock), who is the best in business. Hoping to find at least one master to work for, the minions decide to head straight for Orlanda. Hitching a ride with a bank-robbing family that is also heading to Villain-Con, they soon arrive and gather for Scarlet’s appearance. Met with a roar of cheer, the villainess announces she is looking for new help. In an expected-unexepected turn of events, the minion trio grasp Scarlet’s attention and work for her. This is news that Kevin shares with the rest of his minion buddies, via phone call. We also learn that a group of Yetis served as a stand-in boss for the rest of the minions in their icy home, but naturally that got botched as well. The Yetis drive the minions out and seek England to meet with Scarlet. Back in England, the trio then meets Herb Overkill (voiced by Jon Hamm), Scarlet’s husband and gadget expert, and they tell the minions that Scarlet really wants the Queen of England’s crown, so she can rule England. Using some of Herb’s gadgets, they technically succeed, but not in the conventional way. Bob pulled out a sword lodged in stone, which you know where that comes from, and this nets him the entire country, and Bob is crowned King of England. However, Scarlet feels betrayed and seeks vengeance. Luckily, the minions still know their place, and issues the announcement that Scarlet will be the new Queen. Despite this gesture, Scarlet doesn’t get over the minions “betrayal” and has them locked away for torture, which doesn’t go over very well. The minions escape, hoping to win back Scarlet’s trust, but an accident that nearly kills Scarlet only delivers the final nail in the coffin for them and Scarlet calls for the heads of the trio. Kevin, Stuart, and Bob try to escape, but only Kevin truly evades capture. Getting cornered into one of Herb’s contraptions, Kevin is accidently grown into a giant and seeks to rescue Stuart and Bob. After a harrowing fight, Stuart and Bob are rescued, the rest of the minions finally arrive, and Scarlet is defeated. Kevin, Stuart, and Bob are thanked for their efforts in giving the country back to the Queen and celebrated. But one final act of desperation for the crown, Scarlet and Herb run away with the crown in hand only to be stopped by a young man with a freeze gun… a young round boy with a pointed nose (voiced by Steve Carrell). The minions instantly take a liking to him, whom takes a liking to them as well, and eventually follow the boy back home. The end.
I’m not going to lie, this movie was incredibly funny. I was laughing for a vast majority of the movie. As this was a prequel slash spin-off of the DESPICABLE ME, it was easy to make this movie as unfunny as humanly possible, but I was indeed pleasantly surprised. That isn’t to say that this movie is a perfect film, or anything. In fact, it does have quite a few flaws that do distract, but it’s otherwise a very cute film that shouldn’t be mistaken for bad.
Before getting too into it, I just wanted to ask the question… why Sandra Bullock? Look, don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE Bullock. She’s been one of my favorite comedic actresses for years and is a heavy reason why I would see a movie with her in it, even if the movie itself is bad. But this was a voice-over role. I will never understand why professional voice actors never get their time in the sun underneath the Hollywood sign. If you never advertised that Bullock was in the movie, no kid or parent would really care. It’s a kids movie, the parents will take them to see it. Kids don’t care about star power. How awesome would Scarlet Overkill be if she was voiced by Claudia Black? Holy shit, that would be amazing. No points docked, obviously, I just felt like ranting.
Let’s start with this side. The most obvious is that some jokes are out of place. For example, the scene where Stuart enters a hot tub in a thong. Seriously? When the creators of this movie went on that drawing board, they seriously thought that this movie could not be a coherent story without seeing a minion in a thong? Did we really need to see that shit in a kids movie? Didn’t need to be there.
Also, there’s a lot of moments in the story that don’t go anywhere. For example, once Kevin sees Scarlet for the first time, there’s an implication that he had fallen in love with her. A cute enough moment, but the rest of the movie doesn’t show him trying to win her affection. He conducts himself like a normal minion and not with the motivation of impressing Scarlet. Just… hey, I’m a minion, you gave me an order, I’m going to carry it out. I’m not going to lie, I would have loved to see Kevin compete for Scarlet’s affections against Herb. But that never happens and nothing about that moment truly needed to be there.
Finally, later on the minions carry out a heist for Scarlet and succeed, albeit with them looking like heroes and Scarlet thinking that the trio had betrayed her. Even though the minions turn all power over to her, the minions got the job done. I get that she’s supposed to be a bad guy, but Scarlet isn’t crazy. She’s cruel and calculating, certainly, but nothing about her implicates a loose screw. So when she later abandons the minions to torture, her betrayal doesn’t really make sense. I feel like it was just done to create a 3rd act. I don’t know. Made no sense.
I won’t have too much to rant about as far as good is concerned, but seriously, it’s enough to hold up the movie rather solid. If you were worried that the minions weren’t going to be funny, they are. I love how they gave each minion their own personalities, which did seem lacking from the first movie (I can’t comment on the second, as I haven’t seen it). Stuart loves music and playing the guitar and loves attention. He wants to be famous and adored. Kevin shows a paternal side. There’s these adorable bits where he brushes a smudge off of Bob’s face, like a parent. He’s protective and determined, all culminating in a truly heart-felt character. They don’t always get along, and sometimes even laugh at each other’s misfortune, but they always work together and their bickering never gets in the way of professionalism, which is kind of refreshing as far as these types of team-based movies are concerned.
But let’s get to the best part of the movie. The real reason why anyone will ever see this movie and not yet know why. Bob. Oh dear lord, Bob is bar-none what makes this movie great. Immediately, you fall in love with his energy and excitement. He’s a sympathetic character who wants to do right by his comrades, but makes all the evil things he does look so damn adorable, you want him to succeed. He’s playful and such a sweetheart that is truly unbecoming of an evil henchman. Basically, as long as he’s on screen, the movie becomes that much more hilarious. There may be plenty of cute characters that exist in kids animated movies lately, but I challenge anyone to find me who’s more precious than Bob.
Not gonna lie, Bob makes this movie and easily makes me forgive many of the flaws, or at least enough for me to recommend the movie to anyone interested. Just lose yourself to the antics of Kevin, Stuart, and Bob and the movie is a blast.
My honest rating for MINIONS: 4/5