Despicable Me Review

Published 5 years ago by , Updated July 10th, 2010 at 9:40 am,

despicable me review Despicable Me Review
Screen Rant’s Vic Holtreman reviews Despicable Me

The commercials and trailers for Despicable Me had me hopeful and looking forward to this animated kids’ movie about an older villain trying to remain relevant as a younger bad guy grabs the spotlight. It has the voice talents of Steve Carell (as Gru, the older villain) and Jason Segel (Vector, the younger villain) – along with hundreds of funny little minions that look like yellow pencil erasers. Most everything I saw in the trailers and clips made me giggle (at least a little bit) – but as often happens, the problem is that most of the best comedy bits in the film are shown before you ever pay for your ticket and popcorn.

Gru is the CGI version of the sort of villain that would turn up in a vintage James Bond movie: Thick accent, grandiose plans and the elaborate headquarters and gadgets with which to hatch them. The problem is that there’s a new, young guy on the scene named Vector (previously just “Victor” – but a villain needs a cooler name than that I guess). Vector has been grabbing newspaper headlines and news broadcast attention, while Gru struggles to remain relevant and infamous. He concocts a plan to steal the moon, but needs a loan from the bank (which has a name that will definitely get a chuckle out of the grown-ups in attendance). Sadly, the bank looks upon him the same way the public does – as a has-been. Not the guy worth investing in when there’s a slick new guy in town.

He needs a device that is kept in Vector’s lair, and with its incredible defenses there’s no way he’s getting in. But he discovers that he can get through them by using three little orphan girls as unwitting accomplices. He has no other use for them, but the only way he can get them to help is to adopt them, despite his distaste for cute little children. What he doesn’t expect is how they turn out to be formidable foes in their own right, and of course they chip their way into his cold heart.

As is to be expected, the road to redemption in films (animated or otherwise) is never smooth, and Gru’s mad scientist Dr. Nefario (voiced by Russell Brand) is determined to help keep things in the proper (evil) perspective for Gru despite his reluctant slide into fatherhood.

Steve Carell puts on what sounds like a Russian accent, and frankly he changes his voice so much that I didn’t recognize it as his at all. That’s not a criticism – he gave a great delivery throughout the film and considering what an unlikeable character he played, directors Pierre Coffin and Chris Renaudstill managed to make the audience want to like him. Segel was funny as Vector (butt-dance notwithstanding, but kids like that stuff – what are you going to do?), and I swear they went out of their way to make him look like Bill Gates. icon smile Despicable Me Review

The little girls were just plain adorable, especially the youngest. The dialog was cute, the story funny and the use of 3D was good (especially during the end credits were it’s totally played up for fun). It’s just too bad that most of the funniest scenes in the film were shown in the marketing of the film – there were moments that I’d already seen, which when they appeared in the film I really wished I hadn’t seen before (“it’s so FLUFFY!!!”).

If you haven’t seen much in the way of clips and trailers, you’ll enjoy Despicable Me that much more, but still not nearly as much as your children will. Take the family to this one, you won’t regret it.

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Our Rating:

4 out of 5

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  1. Im going to see it soon!!!!

  2. Im going to see it soon!!!! I work at the movies so,i go in for free lol!!!;)

  3. Think ima skip this and go see a movie with another cgi villain. Megamind. This is too kiddie for me

    • I’m 52 y/o and the movie is not too kiddie for me. Adults that love children will fall in love with this movie regardless. Don’t miss little Agnes. She’s the sweetest & cutest little cartoon girl on the planet period.

      • @Gary

        I completely agree. The best part of the movie is how in the beginning he’s cold and didn’t care about anyone but himself, so he was not able to overcome the obstacles to get into the other villain’s lair, but by the end, his motivation was his love for his girls, so nothing could get in his way. I don’t have any children, but I LOVED that drive and motivation. And I’m sure any daddy out there with a little girl or little girls would appreciate that even more than I do…

  4. I already posted in the weekly comments section what a great film I think this is; I’m surprised you didn’t give it at least 4 stars, but oh well, to each his own…I personally think it is a 5-star film and continues the fun run of quality animation begun by “Toy Story 3″ a bit earlier this summer…I loved it and would highly recommend it to everyone. :)

    • Archaeon,

      Believe me, I went in expecting to really love it, so I was a bit disappointed. It’s really more of a film for kids IMHO, which is fine, that’s the target audience.



  5. The trailers did look inviting. Waiting for the movie to release here(india). Anyone know the release date ??

  6. Oops sorry for repeating myself, my comments wont go in!!!! And Vic,i think ill enjoy this even if im not a kid lol!!! I think its gonna be funny hahaha!!!

  7. Russell Brand is in this? Meaning I would have to hear his ridiculously annoying voice??? Rental…

    • Actually, Ken, I didn’t even recognize his voice either.
      He did a pretty good job of NOT being annoying, if you can believe that. lol

    • The best part about all the voices in this film is that they aren’t relying on ‘name recognition’. You won’t recognize Steve, or Julie Andrews either. It’s pleasantly refreshing to see characters who you don’t think, “oh, that’s Tom Hanks. Yay.”. These characters are not embodying the actors. The actors are playing the characters, not themselves.

  8. Going to see this in two hours can’t wait. Looks hilarious.

    Lol the It’s so Fluffy thing is hilarious Vic as is Curse you Tiny Toilet.

  9. I really enjoyed this movie. Wouldn’t put it in any highly rated category but I would definitely recommend it. Loved Agnes and the “minions” so much that I hung around for the credits hoping to see either one of them again. I wasn’t disappointed. This move rocked!

  10. Gotta say I disagree a little Vic. I thought it was great easily as good as Toy Story 3. I laughed at a lot more than what I saw from previews and I saw alot of them (still maybe you saw more) I found it hilarious. It was also very heart warming. I challenge anyone to find a little girl as cute as the youngest in this film. I can’t believe how many times I smiled just at how adorable she was. Everything she said was just so adorable. The minions were amazingly entertaining. Everything they did made me laugh.

    It was enjoying to watch as Gru slowly went from breaking kids balloons to being a loving father. I thought the transition was handled very well for being a childrens film.

    I would add I some how convinced my self to watch this in 3D and I highly recommend you don’t. 3D in this was very ineffective. They didn’t take advantage of it being 3D until after the credit. In fact at some points I even forgot it was 3D till I realized how uncomfortable my eyes were. The 3D was very poor and only further convinced me that 3D is a waste and I won’t bother watching anymore films in 3D again. I’d like to add more people choose to watch the film in 2D instead of 3D. So maybe all the Doomsayers are as wrong as I’ve said they are.

    • Daniel F,

      Yeah… sometimes lately I find myself second guessing the numerical score I give to films – I may bump this up half a star.


      • It does seem more like a 4 star film to me. It was very well done I thought comical and heart filled.

        Don’t worry Vic we all second guess our opinions on films lol just to bad it’s not out on DVD so you could just pop it in and watch it again to make sure.

    • The problem with 3D is that it has a similar problem as colorblindness. Some people just won’t see it, some get headaches, some see it perfectly. Nothing wrong with any of that – it’s like saying you can’t see the color green – so what? But does that make anything that’s green the same as anything that’s red for the rest of us?

      In fact, if you forgot it was 3D, then that’s probably good. There’s nothing worse for a story to be sitting there thinking, ‘ooh, that’s 3D’.

      To my eyes, I thought the 3D was just right, and much better than toy story 3. Didn’t get a headache at all. There was simply more visual fun in 3D than the 2D version, making it more enjoyable and definitely worth the extra bucks.

  11. Well , I didnt read the review before I saw it because I wanted to be surprised.
    And I agree with the current 4 star rating.
    I Laughed a LOT!
    Very Good film.

  12. Were there any easter eggs for Bond/Spy fans?
    I was so busy Laughing that I didnt notice any.

  13. I realize that the rating for this movie changed for the better. I like when Vic does that :-)

  14. Vic
    Glad u bumbed it to 4 stars,this film deserves it;)

  15. This movie was AWFUL, INSIPID, PREDICTABLE, AND BORING. Proof? Watch it in 2D. This movie is nothing more than an excuse to dazzle infantile minds with 3D, the most bogus ripoff ever perpetrated on the public.

    • Good grief! What film did YOU see?!? I know people have their own opinions, but I’m shocked someone even COULD feel such hatred for the movie…I thought it was wonderful…plus, I’m not sure you actually know what “insipid” means.

      • I agree

    • Hey Shlomo,

      Tell us how you really feel – don’t hold back, now! :)


    • WOW, Bitter!!!!!!!
      Anyhow, I was looking for a movie to see with my hubby and kiddies today and this movie seems to have an overall positive vibe. Just don’t know if I go for the 2d or 3d! Any thoughts?

    • This movie was amazing I dont know what you are talking about! It was simply halarious!

    • This was my favorite movie ever!

      • :-)It was definitely a very funny and sweet movie. I loved how motivated he was when he found out the girls were kidnapped. Awwww, daddy loves his little girls. :-D Love when he just back-hands the shark, lol.


    • How is it a rip off. Did somebody lose a great sum of money in their ticket purchase lol. I’ll bet that you are one of those people that likes to be contrary to everyone. If i say black then you will say white etc. You have got to be a miserable human being to take such a hard line.
      If you don’t like it that is one thing but you are over the top with your comment. You have ice water running through your veins if you can’t admit that Agnes is very cute regardless.

  16. I felt it was heartwarming and one of the good movies my family and I have seen this year.

    We laughed our hearts out!

  17. the minions remind me of Rabbids. So cute! :D

  18. Considering Gru plays right up to the line of child abuse, I think they had to reign it in a little bit. That being said, I loved it just as much as my girls did, and they’re not exactly kiddos anymore, either. I do agree that some of the best bits were in the marketing, but who cares? They all weren’t. I can honestly say I wouldn’t be embarrassed being seen in the theater watching Despicable Me, unlike some other movies out now (anything Twilight-related). No thanks!

  19. This one is something that definitely a movie that I want to watch. Although this isa movie for kids, but I’m sure I will enjoy watching it.

  20. Agnes (the little girl) was so adorable. I honestly hope any kid I have is that cute, even though I’ll come to regret it when they’re spoiled…

  21. On the advice of my 22 year-old and his girlfriend, my husband and I went to see this movie today. I expected sloppy hollywood fare, but it was really very funny. My husband didn’t get parts I was laughing at so much I was crying (former name of the Bank of Evil and the unicorn song). But we both enjoyed it tremendously. The 3-D was effective mainly for the roller coaster ride. Highly recommend it. We want to see it again!

  22. Me & my kids love this movie ;)

  23. very ggod here….