Review - Despicable Me 2 (3D)

Despicable Me 2 (2013), PG, 98 minutes - Three years ago, Despicable Me came out of nowhere to become one of my favorite movies of 2010.  It was a very entertaining animated feature that was full of colorful characters and had a story with a whole lot of heart.  Because Despicable Me was so successful, expectations for Despicable Me 2 were quite high.  I very much enjoyed Despicable Me 2, but I don't think that it was quite as special as the original was.

This sequel picks up after the events of the first film.  Gru (Steve Carell) and the girls have settled in to a normal life (or as normal as one could be in that house).  He has retired from being a super criminal and now has his minions making jams and jellies in his attempt to make a clean living.  The 'normalcy' doesn't last long though and Gru is recruited by Lucy (Kristen Wiig) to help the Anti-Villain League track down a new super criminal threat.

Just as with the first Despicable Me, the voice acting is excellent.  Carell, Russell Brand, Miranda Cosgrove, Elsie Fisher, and Dana Gaier all reprise their roles and are joined by Wiig, Benjamin Bratt, Ken Jeong, and Steve Coogan as villains and Anti-Villain League agents alike.  The animation is beautiful as well.  I ended up seeing this in 3D because that's what was showing when I was able to go.  Compared to other 3D animated films, I didn't think that the quality/need for 3D was really up to snuff.  If I remember correctly, I felt the same way about the first film.

I think that the first Despicable Me captured lightning in a bottle.  It had a little bit of everything and it melded together quite well.  This second film is also quite good.  It has moments of being absolutely hilarious (usually thanks to the minions), but lacks the heart that the first film had.  It could have benefited from more scenes like the opening one in which Gru tries to make sure everything goes as planned for Agnes' birthday.  Don't get me wrong, Despicable Me 2 is well worth checking out, especially if you liked the first one.  The minions alone are worth the price of admission (although I would recommend saving a couple bucks and going to a standard 2D showing).

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