THE world-favorite yellow bespectacled walking capsules are back in the third installment of the “Despicable Me” film series. This time around, supervillain turned anti-villain spy Dru (Steve Carrell) experiences two life-changing events while facing off with a disgruntled former 80’s TV star (“South Park” co-creator Trey Parker).
In “Despicable Me 3,” Gru and wife Lucy (Kristen Wiig) lose their jobs at AVL after failing to catch supervillain Balthazar Bratt, a lanky shoulder-padded washed-out Hollywood star from the ‘80s, who lives up to his former evil fictional TV role.
After he’s kicked out of his prestigious job, Gru discovers he has a twin brother, Dru, (also voiced by Carrell), a filthy rich villain-wannabe—with ample amounts of blonde hair. Meanwhile, Lucy tries too hard to be the perfect mom to Margo, Edith, and Agnes. And the minions, turned off by Gru’s loser state, take off on their own.
Still under the direction of Pierre Coffin, along with Kyle Balda and Eric Guillon, “Despicable Me 3” tells a tight, entertaining story. The 1.5 hours running time is brimming with inspired sight gags, cuteness, and some mildly emotional elements.
Those who are not fans of slapstick comedy will even find themselves experiencing laugh-out-loud moments in this third offering, as Gru and Dru make a hilarious tandem. The choreography of their heist, as they scale Bratt’s tower, seems to be taken from “Mission Impossible” and transformed into a laugh-fest.
Many filmmakers today seem to miss the ‘80s, and the Bratt character feels like the product of that reminiscing. The concept seems corny, but as soon as Bratt hits the floor and dances to Michael Jackson or Madonna in his crime sprees, you can’t help but laugh and mentally snap your fingers to the beat. His excitement is infectious. His weapons and devices are fun and clever.
The minions take a backseat a little, but it doesn’t matter. Those very, very few who question the existence of these yellow things, including me, will come to appreciate them here as they are not as silly and as slapstick-y as before. Their prison time is actually funny.
I am not really a fan of the franchise, but “Descpicable Me 3” is cute, funny, and looks great with all the new locations, especially Dru’s fictional European town. It may not be the best animated film out there, but it’s certainly way better than the forced and corny Part 2 in 2015.
Also, this third installment proves that the creators behind the series are already confident and relaxed in their brand, their work becoming more effortless and inspired. And with the introduction of Dru, we might be seeing more of this franchise in the future.
3 out of 5 stars
In Philippine cinemas since June 14, 2017