FILM REVIEW: Third time unlucky as the laughs get fewer

Despicable Me 3

DESPICABLE ME 3 (U)SHOWCASE CINEMA DE LUX PETERBOROUGH, OUT NOWVOICE CAST: STEVE CARELL, TREY PARKER, KRISTEN WIIG, STEVE COOGAN, JENNY SLATE, MIRANDA COSGROVE, DANA GAIER, NEV SCHARREL, PIERRE COFFIN & JULIE ANDREWSRUNNING TIME: 1 HR 30 MINSDIRECTORS: PIERRE COFFIN & KYLE BALDA

This third helping of Despicable Me continues a gradual decline in story quality and laugh-out-load quota – as this summer’s blockbuster fatigue continues.

More of the human characters and less Minions – probably due to them helming their own standalone movie two years ago – isn’t necessarily a good thing as Steve Carell’s Gru and co provide nothing more than a serviceable animation.

After agent Gru is fired from the Anti-Villain League – with wife Lucy (Kristen Wiig) loyally following suit – for failing to snaffle new bad guy on the block Balthazar Bratt (South Park co-creator Trey Parker), a former child star bent on world domination, the former super-criminal gets some unlikely news.

That comes in the form of his long-lost twin brother Dru (also voiced by Carell) – more charming, cheery, successful, and with a full head of hair – who wants to team up with his newly found bro for one last heist, with Gru using this opportunity to try and take down criminal Bratt, who is obsessed with the character he played in the eighties, and wants to take his vengeance out on the people of Hollywood and beyond.

But while Parker’s nefarious Michael Jackson, Madonna and A-Ha-loving Bratt is easily the best thing about the movie, the side stories involving Gru/Dru, Lucy and the three girls, and the Minions – even though the X-Factor-alike and prison scenes are noteworthy – are barely passable fillers for a franchise that is starting to slip on its own banana skins.

This is definitely the Shrek the Third of the series, and even though the little ‘uns will still find it colourful, adults will only enjoy the throwbacks to eighties nostalgia – and after the terrific original it’s all sadly a little predictable.

Rating: 2.5/5 – Gavin Miller

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