They are described as “pill-shaped” “knights in shining denim.” Who knows how they came to be? They just…are. According to the new Minions movie, they have existed since the times of the dinosaurs, if not before, making them billions of years old. And they have spent those many long years seeking the “biggest, baddest villain to serve.”
Now to me, the Minions don’t seem particularly bad, just misguided. It’s not totally clear why they are so devoted to the cause of evil. Luckily this brand of “evil” in the Minions movie is at the level of a seven-year-old’s understanding, and it’s injected with plenty of humor. In this case, villainess Scarlet Overkill (the voice of Sandra Bullock) wants to steal Queen Elizabeth II’s crown, and the Minions (Kevin, Stuart and Bob–the voice of director Pierre Coffin) vow to help her, because they just think bad guys are cool.
There are plenty of nods to grownups in this movie, especially the soundtrack of 1960s classic tunes (gotta love the nod to HAIR with the Tower of London guards working it). Some of the efforts to appeal to adults take it too far, especially a corset-tightening scene. One of the scenes of a Minion cuddling up to two fire hydrants in a hot tub is funny but questionable. A scene set in a torture chamber, along with the amped-up climax full of large-scale weaponry in the standoff between Scarlet and Kevin, caused my daughter to say that the movie was “terrible and horrible” because those scenes are too scary. It’s a bit thin on plot, but the Minions movie will do what it’s designed to do: tickle your own little Minion’s funny bone.