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Minions: The Rise of Gru Review: A Fun Family Adventure

The trio of Minions: Stuart, Kevin, and Bob

Minions: The Rise of Gru is finally in theaters after many COVID delays! My biggest takeaway from the 2015 prequel Minions was that there was something missing; that something was having Gru with the Minions. While we meet the young villain at the end of the first Minions film, it’s not enough to make it higher on my ranking list. That being said, Minions: The Rise of Gru fixes that problem by giving us more time with Gru while also allowing our trio of Minions (Kevin, Stuart, and Bob) to have their time to shine. The result is a sequel that is much better than the original!

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While it is a better overall film in general, it’s hard to tell who exactly the film’s target audience is. The 70s setting is a lot of fun, filled with some great music and pop culture references of that time! However, those will fly over the heads of the little kids coming to see this movie; I was in a theater full of families with children under 5 and I can almost guarantee they have no clue what Jaws is (which is definitely a good thing). They will appreciate the colorful outfits of the time though, along with our little yellow Minions.

Pierre Coffin as Stuart, Bob, and Kevin in Minions: The Rise of Gru

Steve Carell is once again great as Gru, this time playing a 12 year old version of the character. That doesn’t matter though because of how ridiculous the voice is; it could work for any age! Pierre Coffin should be commended as well for his vocal work as the Minions. I can’t imagine that Minionese (which is what their language is actually called) is easy to deliver, but he does a wonderful job and makes each Minion their own.

The Vicious 6 in Minions: The Rise of Gru

We also are introduced to a classic villain team: The Vicious 6. While many members of the team are underdeveloped character wise, they are great visually. And the talent behind the characters is fantastic! From left to right, you have Stronghold (Danny Trejo), Taraji P. Henson (Belle Bottom), Wild Knuckles (Alan Arkin), Jean-Clawed (Jean-Claude Van Damme), Svengeance (Dolph Lundgren), and Nun-Chuck (Lucy Lawless); the highlights are definitely Arkin and Henson as the leaders of the team. Arkin also gets some nice time to work with Carell and act as a mentor to Gru as he finds his footing as a super villain.

I also want to take time to acknowledge some other supporting characters, especially Russell Brand as a younger Dr. Nefario and Michelle Yeoh as Master Chow, who takes the Minions under her wing and gets them prepared for our grand finale. Plus, we get Julie Andrews back as Gru’s Mom, which is an absolute delight and I’m sure she had a great time playing this part!

Overall, I had a fun time seeing this one in theaters. The biggest reason why was because the kids were enjoying it along with the adults. While it’s a little bit all over the place story wise, it’s better than the film that came before it. If you don’t want to go see it in theaters, I would definitely recommend that you stream it when it’s available (most likely on Peacock)!

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Written by Elliott Wishnefsky

Elliott Wishnefsky is an Entertainment Writer & Critic for FandomWire. He's a graduate of Millersville University with a Bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education. Elliott is also a content creator for his own brand, Learning at the Movies! Twitter: @Learning_Movies | Facebook/Instagram: @learningatthemovies | TikTok: @learningatthemovies