Cars 3

Vampire Owl: An animated movie in a multiplex is always cool, you know.

Vampire Bat: And what makes it cooler than the rest?

Vampire Owl: Well, they have the best 3D for animated movies – its works the best for this genre.

Vampire Bat: Actually, the animated movies will need them these days, as a lot of them are not working as well as they used to be.

Vampire Owl: You mean mostly about the sequels.

Vampire Bat: This movie is a sequel too. They all maintain a certain level from which they don’t go down, but we actually expect more.

Vampire Owl: Disappointment due to high expectations – I have been there before.

Vampire Bat: But Despicable Me 3 will have the audience divided on deciding which one to watch.

Vampire Owl: Still, Cars 3 got more shows, which is rather surprising.

Vampire Bat: Well, this one surely seems less childish with its posters. But I am sure that this is not going to be Moana, Zootopia, Frozen or Inside Out.

[Gets the tickets with cardamom tea and cheese popcorn].

What is the movie about? :: Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) is having some serious fun time racing with the veteran racers, competing well, and still being the fastest of them all. As he is so close to winning another race by a small margin, a stylish looking black car Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer) just goes past him and finishes first, much to the surprise of everyone that an unknown rookie managed to sneak in. It is only the beginning, as more of the new generation cars keep coming in, and with the use of better technology and training, manages to do better than the veterans who just focus on running fast. Soon, all the other veterans have retired, leaving McQueen as the last of the old generation racers. Even with his best effort, McQueen can only become second to Jackson, and by trying too hard, blows one of his tyres and meets with an accident, leaving the younger generation of high-tech cars to rule the racing arena.

So, what happens next? :: McQueen has recovered, four months later, and he is staying back at his hometown. His well-wishers including his girlfriend Sally Carrera (Bonnie Hunt) and best friend Mater (Larry the Cable Guy) motivates him enough to get back to racing, even though everyone is not without doubts regarding his ability to even come close to beating a younger opponent who is certainly faster and is following high-tech methods. He also decides to change his approach towards racing so that the result could be different. Dusty (Ray Magliozzi) and Rusty (Tom Magliozzi), the owners of Rust-Eze, and the main sponsors, inform him of having sold the company to Sterling (Nathan Fillion), who currently runs the elite racing car training facility called Rust-eze Racing Center – McQueen gets to train with the new technology and facilities there.

And, what is to follow next in the adventure? :: Cruz Ramirez (Cristela Alonzo), who is also a fan of McQueen is appointed as his trainer. But it doesn’t go as planned, as McQueen is unable to use the modern technology to his advantage, and even ends up crashing into the race simulator which was supposed to help him against Jackson. Sterling tells him that it is time that they build on the legacy of McQueen, as there is not much scope with him racing now, with younger cars with a better use of technology on the track. But McQueen asks him for one final chance to race, which Sterling agrees to provide him on the promise that he will retire if he losses, as the company can’t afford to keep losing the races. But it turns that no matter where and when he tries, he is unable to get anywhere near Jackson’s top speed, while Cruz has her own problems to deal with. Can Jackson be beaten by anyone, and can McQueen reclaim some of his lost glory on track?

The defence of Cars 3 :: There are some nice animated characters on the big screen in the form of cars, and as we expect, the emotional side is strong, and so is the colourful world inside the screen. There is also the inspirational message about the main character as well as the supporting cast that strives towards their objective, and our hero is someone who doesn’t give up – motivation is served by cars better than the usual human being does. His success is that we feel for the cars as if they are humans, even more than what animals in the animated movies sometimes fail to achieve. There is a fine world which is built here, and the cars look effective for sure. This is also an improvement from the second movie, even though, not better than the first movie – it would be even more difficult to repeat this with another movie, and we have a lot of its resources being already used. The three Cars movies releasing in 2006, 2011 and 2017 – well, we are made to wait so long for the sequels, and it is good to have them in the end.

The claws of flaw :: The safe route is taken once again by this franchise, and the humour content is surprisingly so less for a movie like this – Despicable Me 3 is certain to overtake this flick with that. There is also some struggle during the middle part, where we wonder what the movie is going to accomplish as we progress towards the end – that is a kind of drag there. There is that confusion that we feel in the middle, which can only be solved by having more popcorn or french fries with extra masala tea. It has also been a little too much time since Cars 2 had come and left, and that gap is really felt. The 3D could have also been better, as we look for more excitement with the racing stuff happening on the big screen. The twist in the end might not be that effective for everyone, as it brings down the possibility of having a good sequel, where the same could have tried more effectively, focusing on the same from the beginning itself.

How it finishes :: After a certain deviation which had happened with the previous movie, Cars 2, the movie has come back to bring the focus at the right side. After that unnecessary attention on a secondary character, we are back to the one who matters the most than any other – Lightning McQueen, and all things get back to track and everything is now related to racing. This weekend, Cars 3 actually go one on one against Despicable Me 3, a battle which seemed to be heading towards a draw, with the opinions from both the critics as well as the general audience. Compared to its current opponent, Cars 3 should appeal more to the youth, while Despicable Me 3 should be inclined towards the children, even though both should be basically for all ages, and a joy to watch in 3D. These two movies going against each other, will make this weekend a perfect day of animated 3D adventure, as we can choose to watch them both.

Release date: 16th June 2017
Running time: 109 minutes
Directed by: Brian Fee
Starring: Owen Wilson, Cristela Alonzo, Chris Cooper, Armie Hammer, Larry the Cable Guy, Nathan Fillion, Kerry Washington, Lea DeLaria, Lloyd Sherr, Paul Dooley, Jenifer Lewis, Katherine Helmond, Chris Cooper, Lewis Hamilton, Bob Costas, Bob Peterson, Cheech Marin, Michael Wallis, John Ratzenberger, Ray Magliozzi, Tom Magliozzi, Isiah Whitlock Jr, Junior Johnson, Margo Martindale

@ Cemetery Watch
✠ The Vampire Bat.

Penguins of Madagascar

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Vampire Owl :: I have received a letter from the vampire penguin.

Vampire Bat :: What does it say?

Vampire Owl :: It says that he is happy to announce the release of Penguins of Madagascar, a movie that make all the undead penguins proud, and he wants us to watch it in the name of the Universal Vampire Brotherhood.

Vampire Bat :: But I have already watched it.

Vampire Owl :: What? Then why did I see no opinion?

Vampire Bat :: Because I delayed it so that there would be gap between the posts.

Vampire Owl :: It is totally unfair. Now as the Vampire Penguin has demanded it, I have to watch it alone. What happened to watching The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1?

Vampire Bat :: Skipped it. Waiting for some inspiration for me watch it. Nobody has that much of an opinion and I have already read that book and has less hopes about this one.

Vampire Owl :: And then you watched the Penguins alone. A cruel move against me there.

Vampire Bat :: You can watch it with your zombie minions. It has some good ideas for owlification.

[Leaves for the bus stop].

The background :: Do you remember those penguins of the Central Park Zoo? Skipper, Kowalski, Rico and Private proved to be the smartest creatures around. They have been helping our heroes of the Madagascar series, Alex the lion, Marty the Zebra, Melman the Giraffe and Gloria the hippopotamus. We have had no option, but to love the penguins throughout the series. They have been too good, and it is clear that they always deserved a spin-off movie for themselves. Well, this is not just that spin-off, but also the sequel to Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted as the action continues from the circus itself as they go on to celebrate Private’s birthday. It is not really the continuation though, as Madagascar 4 is scheduled to be released on May 18th 2018, but as that date is too far away, lets be happy with this arrangement of the penguin characters for now.

What is it about? :: In a flashback, we see that somewhere in Antarctica, three little penguins, Skipper (Tom McGrath), Kowalski (Chris Miller), and Rico (Conrad Vernon), save an egg from seals and end up floating far away on an iceberg. The egg hatches and becomes Private (Christopher Knights). Back to the present, as they go to steal from the United Sates treasury to enjoy Private’s birthday after the events of Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted, the get caught by Dave (John Malkovich), an octopus who lives in the human costume of Dr. Octavius Brine after having to be transported from zoo to zoo due to new cute penguins coming. He is now looking for revenge on all penguin kind. As they try to escape, the Penguins are saved by a special force known as the North Wind, lead by, a wolf named Classified (Benedict Cumberbatch), a seal named Short Fuse (Ken Jeong), a polar bear named Corporal (Peter Stormare), and an owl named Eva (Annet Mahendru). Due to some differences, the two teams decide to chase the villain through their own paths; will they succeed?

The defence of Penguins of Madagascar :: Once again, just like the other movies of the Madagascar series, this is lots of fun. There are some genuinely funny moments in this one, and they are just meant for evoking the laughter, making this one a big fun ride, and people are certain to be entertained. The penguins as well as the special animal forces are admirable characters, and this is an opportunity for us to know those characters whom we liked a lot in the franchise in a much better way. The family audiences with kids are going to love this one, that is for sure, and might not want to miss this one. The moments which involve the meeting of the two groups as well as the same with the villain along with that moment when all three groups meet are hilarious. The message is also nicely given, about the appearance not being that much of a factor. Even as the movie doesn’t go on to be one of the top three animated movies of the year as expected, it is really a powered entertainer.

The Claws of flaw :: It is pretty much sillier even considering the fact that it is an animated movie, and the predictability factor is once again big. There is nothing like the final extravaganza that the last movie in the franchise had offered, and even in 3D, this one offers much less compared to what was expected. There are ordinary moments in the movie too, and there are scenes which are extremely dumb, and the presence of those moments which fail to click are also present here and there, but they can still be avoided. This one is also weaker than the three other Madagascar movies, all of which are worth an eighty five and above in the score. This movie actually feeds on that impact that those three movies had created, and ends up extending the fanbase of the franchise. There are moments which are just created for the sake of being there, and the plot never really shows much scope, ever. There is repetition, no doubt about it. There is a chance that this will make the penguins less interesting with too much attention given here.

Soul exploration :: The movie’s first attention is on brotherhood for sure. But it is not the major theme here, as it focuses more on appearances as we can see right from the beginning. The penguin named Private is actually considered to be too cute, and the others feel that the only thing that he can do is to distract the opponent for the rest to take the appropriate action. The same is the case of all four penguins as far as the other animals and birds are concerned – they think that the penguins are too cute to do anything strong and significant. Most of the people here base their assumptions based on the looks and nobody really cares to give these people a try. But everything would change in the end, and it is to this finish which says that appearance doesn’t define the quality or brilliance of a person that the movie strives to reach. It is the appearance itself that creates the villain here, and the movie focuses so much on the same. Penguins of Madagascar never retreats from that aim as we see the traits everywhere.

How it finishes :: The big surprise here was that this movie had shows at more multiplexes than The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1. That was surprising because it was clear that it really is the movie that everyone want to watch, its popularity only matched by just another sequel which would be the last part of The Hobbit which is also coming up. I would guess that the multiplexes decided to go completely with the family audiences this time instead of choosing the movie which the youth have been waiting for so long to watch. It is the same reason why the movie has evaded me so far, and another reason is that I know the story and don’t find the first part of the book interesting; even the last book as whole is the least interesting of the series. Yes, I wanted to watch it, but as the time came, I ended up choosing another movie again. Well, there is still time, but I do feel that many others have also done the same, which is why Penguins of Madagascar is doing well here.

Release date: 28th November 2014 (India), 26th November 2014 (USA)
Running time: 92 minutes
Directed by: Simon J. Smith, Eric Darnell
Starring (voice): Tom McGrath, Chris Miller, Conrad Vernon, Christopher Knights, Benedict Cumberbatch, John Malkovich, Ken Jeong, Annet Mahendru, Peter Stormare, Werner Herzog

penguinso

@ Cemetery Watch
✠ The Vampire Bat.

TMNT

Teenage_Mutant_Ninja_Turtles (2)

Vampire Owl :: So we are going to watch Megan Fox.

Vampire Bat :: We are going to watch some mutated turtles who got ninja training and claims to be teenagers.

Vampire Owl :: Okay. We are going to watch one fox and four turtles. Still, I will watch the Fox more.

Vampire Bat :: It is quite obvious that we will watch Megan Fox more. But this movie is still about turtles.

Vampire Owl :: But the real turtle movie was in Malayalam. It was called Annayum Rasoolum. But it was neither for teenagers or mutated.

Vampire Bat :: That was the snail movie. Turtles are actually faster. The movie might even lose a race to a random snail.

Vampire Owl :: How can you be sure that turtles are faster? What if there is a turbo mode?

Vampire Bat :: Because turtles have legs?

Vampire Owl :: Why are we even talking about turtles when there is Megan Fox?

Vampire Bat :: Because we have to remember the name at the counter.

[Goes to the ticket counter].

What is it about? :: April O’Neil (Megan Fox) is a reporter who keeps looking for some big story which can take her status at the news office to a higher level. For the same, she attempts to gather some information about a criminal gang called the Foot Clan, but ends up seeing the goons being defeated by some shadow-like figures which comes out of nowhere and disappears. As she has no proof about the same, nobody really believes her, and she sets out to find more information about the same. The Turtles Leonardo (Johnny Knoxville), Michelangelo (Noel Fisher), Donatello (Jeremy Howard), and Raphael (Alan Ritchson) soon come in contact with her and she is caught in a battle between Foot Clan lead by The Shredder (Tohoru Masamune) and his wealthy and influential student Eric Sacks (William Fichtner) and the turtles. But the evil plan of the gang seems to be much more than just random robbery, smuggling and other criminal activities, as it turns out that the major objective is much more than all of those. But are the turtles and April good enough to stop the same?

The defence of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles :: The movie’s title itself explains what is to be expected from it, as there is basically nothing else about this movie other than the four crime-fighting reptiles with one heroine. The action sequences are very well done here, and there are lots of nice ones, even as some of them might be a bit difficult to follow with the pace. The special effects are very good and the turtles are nicely detailed even as there can be the doubt about it suiting the current creative imagination. The funny side works up-to an extent. The stunts are very good in 3D and they look even better when the action takes place with such a such a great background atmosphere – the tunnels, the rooftop and the scientific laboratory with its surrounding snow covered world are those premises where the stylish fights take place. There is lot of style involved along with the destruction and particles being thrown at you in 3D making good use of the technology. Three of the turtles other than the flirt are okay, but may be they wanted to prove that even turtles love Megan Fox, the most gorgeous one?

The claws of flaw :: This movie is basically about talking reptiles which can talk and turtles which can move faster than trained humans. But this movie made about walking humanoid turtles turns out to be immature for the adult viewers. I am pretty sure that I would have enjoyed this movie if I had this opportunity about fifteen years ago, and that would have been the right moment for me to go for this. But for an average adult audience, this should look pretty much stupid and silly for most of the time. The turtles are also somewhat irritating, while the Michelangelo one completely destroys the name of that Italian Renaissance painter with too much ridiculous dialogues. The characterization is just made to differentiate between the turtles and nothing else is worked on, including the roles of the villains as well as our heroine. The movie also goes on predictable lines, with an investigator looking for news, and a few heroes being trained by someone, and the villains who wish to spread chaos in the city for making money and fame. The movie needed more attention in its working, and the turtles needed re-working for the age.

Performers of the soul :: Even as this is all about the four turtles, Megan Fox becomes that leading lady and the one human character which steals all the attention. She plays the only positive non-CGI character that is there to catch our sight. She looks extremely good throughout the movie and there is no doubt about the fact that there is only one gorgeous lady who gets all the attention. It is just another role which follows the usual stereotype stuff, and yet it is clear that she has done what was expected from her in such a movie. I doubt if something more was actually expected when such a shallow character was given to her. Yes, everybody knows why she is there, and the obvious fact that she is a reason for people to be happy even if everything goes terribly wrong. Meanwhile, William Fichtner turns out to be a good villain there. Then there are the turtles and one rat, plus the villain in the armour, all of them going in a typical comic book style, with nothing special there – add one possible boyfriend there too for the lovely young lady.

Soul exploration :: When we say Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has no soul, it should be mainly about the characters in this movie, especially the major protagonists, and that is indeed the case here. There is just that collection of names of the Italian Renaissance painters which is not going to make Florence any happier. The movie attempts to go through their characters, and the one rat father figure, but that doesn’t work too well. The turtles remain weird and leaves not much to relate, while Megan Fox has a character to play with all the one-dimensional qualities reflected clearly. This should be a major reason why the rabbit might actually win the race for a change, and can we not bet on him for going past such lazy turtles with ease? Wasn’t that always supposed to happen? There was always that long lost animated series which we used to watch as kids, and loved – but this one doesn’t live up-to the strength of those works. May be we can somehow watch them and also get those comics which I never had the opportunity to read.

How it finishes :: Twenty one days after its release in the United States, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles finally releases in India. It has been a long wait, and considering the time spent thinking that it will release tomorrow, or another tomorrow, this didn’t prove to be worth it. This is also the highest rate I have paid for a movie in the last few months, and it did make me wonder if it was money well spent. Step Up: All In has also released here, and its fate is yet to be known. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has still managed to bring in its own audience, including children, families and the youth, and it is quite surprising with the reviews it had got, not many positive ones there. There is a sequel coming up in 2016, and one has to wonder what fate it will bring, even as box-office seems to be bright for this movie – that is one thing it can boast about, being a financial success, something which can be safely associated with almost all the superhero movies with all the action and special effects. Otherwise, you can always watch a movie like this for Megan Fox – the centre of this solar system.

Release date: 29th August 2014 (India); 8th August 2014 (US)
Running time: 101 minutes
Directed by: Jonathan Liebesman
Starring: Megan Fox, Alan Ritchson, Jeremy Howard, Pete Ploszek, Noel Fisher, Will Arnett, Danny Woodburn, William Fichtner, Johnny Knoxville, Tony Shalhoub

teenagemutantninjaturtles

@ Cemetery Watch
✠ The Vampire Bat.

The Lorax

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What is The Lorax? :: Here is a movie based on Dr. Seuss’ children’s book of the same name. Born as Theodor Seuss Geisel, Dr. Seuss has published fourty six books for children, and this one published in 1971 should be the most popular of them all. The book as well as the movie talks about the poor situation of the environment which humanity has brought on by themselves. There are significant differences between the book and the movie, and some might feel that there might have been a little bit too much deviation to suit the standards of Hollywood. But the fact remains that it has a strong message for the environment, something which has not been lost in the adaptation. So who is this guy known as The Lorax? Does he save the environment by making sure that the trees are not cut and the air and water are not polluted? Is he something like the male fairy of the forest of just another wood elf? Lets venture deep into the same.

What is it about? :: The movie begins with the story of Ted Wiggins, a twelve year old boy who lives in an artificial world. Surrounded by a destroyed environment, he lives in a walled city called Thneedville where everything is made of metals, platic or synthetics, and there is not even one tree which is real. There is a price for natural resources and clean air is difficult to get. Our kid wishes to impress a tree-loving young girl called Audrey by getting a real tree for her, but there is no such thing available. His grandmother tells him about Once-ler who can give him enough information about trees if can get that man fifteen cents, a nail, and a shell of a great-great-great grandfather snail. Even as the mayor of Thneedville, Aloysius O’Hare who sells bottled oxygen tries to keep him inside the walls, the boy sneaks out regularly in order to hear the story of the man who will only give him the tree after he finishes his tale. It turns out that the story is more of a history about the trees rather than anything else. Whatever it is, the boy needs his tree.

The story of Once-ler (You can choose to skip this one if you don’t need more details) :: The man who is hidden from the outside in her mostly destroyed cottage tells the story of a young man who left his family and reached the forest in order to make money. After cutting down the first tree, he meets the guardian of the forest, The Lorax. Even as Once-ler agrees not to cut another tree, but only to take what is needed from a living tree, his Thneed invention becomes a great success, and as his family members join him, there is a horrible attack on the trees with the mass production which needed big deforestation and the final destruction of the forest with not even one single tree left. As the air, water and land remains polluted and nothing left for him to do business with, his people abandons him and he is left with no hope. As all the animals and The Lorax leaves, he becomes a recluse living in an abandoned cottage. Now he needs to make amends for his action, but can he do it, or how will he do the same?

The defence of The Lorax :: I can’t remember a movie which has had this strong an environmental theme for a long time. It has the strong background of a brilliant work, and they have used it well to further strengthen the characters in the movie and make it more suitable for the current age. The looks of the characters are also appealing for the children. Its emphasis on saving the environment and its powerful assertion on the need to save the nature is impressive. As the world is slowly being taken over by the corporates who use the power of science to manipulate nature and create an artificial world out of nowhere, this has a powerful role to play. May be this can keep the newer generation of kids informed about the need to safeguard the world they live in. The preservation as well as the improvement of the natural environment should be taught in the early age itself rather than throwing scientific nonsense doing their brains. The movie can actually do a great job in the same.

The claws of flaw :: The movie surely deviates from the book, and its environmental concern is indeed a bit overdone. There are not many good tunes, and there is not enough fun with this one as compared to the other animated movies. There is a pervading dark tone around it, and the irony about the movie might be too much for an animated movie. It often losses its point as the life in the synthetic world is shown as perfect even in the natural destruction. There is also too much of the life in the artificial world which seems to justify itself without nature. Why does our hero want to grow a tree? Not to save the environment, but to impress a girl. The romantic subplots are getting more and more ridiculous these days, and I would hope that they can do without it whenever not needed. The environment is not part of our need to impress someone, it is the need of our life, not only of ours, but all life forms. It should stay with us forever rather than becoming an instrument to tell others that we did that, and we are awesome!

Nature’s sad loss :: Lets think about all these before we concentrate on sending rockets to Moon, Mars and everything that the scientists claim about. If we can’t save our planet which is moving more and more into chaos, what are we going to do about the future worlds were we live in? How can we even know that such a world exists without seeing them? We hear that they sent the rocket there, but how will we ever know that such things really happened – the plight of the common man who is set to believe everything, and can’t question where all the money disappears. Well, we have an environment to take care of right before our eyes. We can’t care about our habitat and our people; instead we look for a habitat in another world and also for lifeforms in another worlds. I have a lot of respect for the nations who would actually care about their citizens rather than go for space research. The lesser the betterment of other worlds, that much the better.

How it finishes :: With a villain who is almost like all the companies of the present who sells bottled water, and a selfish hero along with a former selfish hero, the movie has its flaws, but with its appealing animation and still powerful environmental message, the movie takes control. The biggest advantage might be that the kids can take a message home, that the trees are good and they should be planted everywhere – with a hope that when they grow-up, the world becomes a better place, even if one has to doubt that seriously seeing how they are exposed to the artificial world in such a young age. The respect for the elders, the parents and the teachers are slowly disappearing, but may be this movie can put a little bit of respect for nature in them. If it does, that should be the success that this movie can boast about. It is quite a short movie lasting less than one and half hours and hope you all give it a try. There is the need for balance between the humanity and the nature, and the the clock is ticking!

Release date: 27th July 2012
Running time: 86 minutes
Directed by: Chris Renaud
Starring (voice): Zac Efron, Danny DeVito, Ed Helms, Taylor Swift, Rob Riggle, Betty White, Jenny Slate

theloraxx copy

@ Cemetery Watch
✠The Vampire Bat.

Despicable Me 2

despicableme (7)

In spite of knowing the critical annihilation and the box-office devastation which has created that horrible shadow of death over this movie’s major nemesis, and one of the only two Hollywood movies which released here for the last two weeks, I took that huge step to watch The Lone Ranger ahead of Despicable Me 2 which had to be the obvious choice with a better critic’s love at rottentomatoes and a better audience love at IMDB. It mainly because they said the same about two other Johny Depp movies, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and Alice in Wonderland, and I watched both of the movies, and understood how much subjective their ratings were, and how much they differed from me according to the likes and dislikes; and as my opinions are considered, I would stay away from those not so interesting ideas and leave myself to the mercy of the movie directly. I had this feeling; may be The Lone Ranger is too good for the critics to take? I always knew they had their own preference except for the few. So what if the movie hit an area which made them give such low ratings?

There are many side to it though, as at that moment, I hadn’t remembered how well they had negatively rated Ghost Rider 2, as that was a memory which I successfully erased by planting better images of awesome movies. It was a much needed intellectual operation, I assure you, for without the same, I wouldn’t have given away so much to the multiplexes with such an animated ease. Well, I was half-wrong as The Lone Ranger was not that good and still not too bad, and then I had to follow it with Despicable Me 2. How can one say no to Gru, the super-villain who adopts three girls and turns good, just like the good old Megamind who turned good after adopting the lady and the city. We had both of them saving the day against a villain each, who had the advantage on that side. There are so many thing about bad turning good, and one of them is that it brings the message of hope, and with Despicable Me 2, it continues. Well, being despicable has never been an option, and it has ornated the villains for quite a long time. Both Gru and Megamind are just the lighter shades of the same evil which failed miserably in its attempt to maintain its legacy, and instead had to turn to where the really belonged, to goodness.

A giant magnet steals a secret laboratory which had a chemical compound wihich could turn any creature into mindless, indestructible killing machines. The Anti-Villain League (AVL), a secret organization working to keep the super-villains under control, is worried about the machines going into the wrong hands. The former super-villain Gru is asked to help on the matter. Even as he rejects the offer, there is a later reconsideration as his business is going a strange way and his scientist friend who misses being evil also leaves him. Gru takes over as an undercover agent in a bakery selling cupcakes along with the established secret agent Lucy Wild who becomes his love interest later. He doubts one of the owners of a restaurant in the same mall as one of those fiery villains of the past who is supposed to be dead. But the suspicion eventually falls on the wig-maker Floyd Eagle-san who is found to have some of the chemical compound inside the walls of his shop. Gru has to come up with his own theories, get back his love and also find a number of his minions who have gone missing for sometime. It is up-to him to save the world from whatever plan an evil mastermind has already made and is working for.

Gru rules the show yet again, and is second only to our own Megamind, and the minions come next to the elves of Rise of the Guardians. The latter almost ties with the saber-toothed squirrel of the Ice Age series and the penguins of the Madagascar series. Gru’s relationship with the kids and his response to his own feeling of love are the highlights of the movie, and other than that, there is nothing innovative nor extraordinary – but the way in which the legacy of the first movie is maintained, is applaudable. The minions keep bringing the laughter and the smile to each and every person in the theatre, and the age difference doesn’t really matter. They get more and more adorable as the stupid little things, a replica of the Vodafone Zoo-zoos, as they keep on talking in a strange language, and doing the deeds of stupidity with success and still remain an integral part of all the evil and good plans. From the first moment of the title sequence itself, they would seem to make us believe that it is their movie, and they are there till the end, and considering the fact that they are many and they look the same, this is the “minion” movie. The name itself takes me back to that game Overlord, one of my all-time top ten games, and thus it is a gamer alert & game reminder movie for me too.

Just as Gru would always be the same except for the alignment, the same is the case of the kids and the minions. But, there is no doubt about the fact that Gru has turned a little more of the big loving, caring, possessive father figure, but that signs were always there in him, even as villain, and now with the absence of evil, that is one thing he can focus on with full concentration – along with being not that good a businessman as he claims or wishes to be. Being a spy could replace the same, but here it came as the second preference. Unlike Megamind, Gru is not a villain who directly makes one think about all the possible themes and motifs, as Despicable Me has always remained intellectually inferior to Megamind, but as a family movie, it had scored a bit more, and the kids are expected to prefer this one for its too simple a story and the little ones who they can easily identify with; for the parents, they can give the kids some of the best moments through this movie, and that too in good 3D and lovable characters.

“When the world needed a hero, they called a villain” – it is that tagline which can work with so many movies starting with Megamind. It has not been too long since Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire came up with those lines of heavy significance: “Evil is always possible. And goodness is eternally difficult.” Despicable Me 2 presents us with a Gru is more fun when he acts kind of evil or when he acts like a kid. Considering the belief that humans are inherently evil, this works perfectly well. But then the question remains if he should have been good or evil, except for the fact that he is very much capable of goodness. It is a question that might never have an answer, as both the goodness and the evil is necessary for a possible sequel later. But with a new member added to the family and their world being made complete, the possibility is less. One more sequel can still do this series good, as there is a lot more life left in this as long as the audience’s love for the characters are concerned. They would love to have another, and that might be an assurance.

Does this successfully become preachy and work out a legacy which can match this movie with Megamind? The answer is no, and if there was any of the same about good and evil, it gets washed away by the heavy dose of fun. The spin-off movie titled Minions, featuring the Minions as the major characters is scheduled for a release on December 19th, 2014 – I wouldn’t expect that to come up with anything other than fun though. Just like this movie, it won’t leave you with a question “to watch or not to watch”, as nobody will have to tell you to go for that one, considering how much of a success this is turning out to be at this part of the world. But that would be another movie of pure entertainment fueled by extreme silliness, presented in a lovable manner. There exists a group of people who can be made to laugh only by the minions, and such a species would always need them. For the people who want a different minion, there is always the movie, Megamind – undoubtedly the best animated movie in many ways, and all the reasons for it to be called so, is to be explored individually by troubling the intellect, and supported by the fun.

Release date: 3rd July 2013
Running time: 98 minutes
Directed by: Pierre Coffin and Chris Renaud
Starring (voice): Steve Carell, Kristen Wiig, Benjamin Bratt, Miranda Cosgrove, Russell Brand, Steve Coogan, Ken Jeong

despicable copy

@ Cemetery Watch
✠ The Vampire Bat.