Saved by Love
Starring: The voices of Steve Carell,
Jason Segel, Kristen Wiig,
Miranda Cosgrove, Will Arnett,
Julie Andrews, Dana Gaier,
Elsie Fisher, Danny McBride,
and Jack McBrayer
Audience: Older children to adults
Runtime: 95 minutes
Distributor: Universal Pictures/NBC
Director: Chris Renaud and Pierre Coffin
Executive Producer: Nina Rowan and Sergio Pablos
Producer: Chris Meledandri, Janet Healy
and John Cohen
Writer: Cinco Paul and Ken Daurio
Address Comments To:Jeffrey R. Immelt, Chairman/CEO, General Electric
Jeff Zucker, President/CEO, NBC Universal
Ron Meyer, President/COO, Universal Studios
Adam Fogelson, Chairman
100 Universal City Plaza
Universal City, CA 91608-1085
Phone: (818) 777-1000
Web Page: www.universalstudios.com
The movie opens with the theft of the great pyramid at Giza. The world is worried about who stole the pyramid. The villainous Gru is upset that there’s another villain out there who is more dastardly than he is. He calls his hundreds of little minions together to pull off the greatest heist of all time: Stealing the moon! Gru believes the Evil Bank will finance his dastardly deed.
Meanwhile, three little orphan girls are selling cookies for their orphanage. Hard-hearted Gru sends Agnes, Marge and Edith away, so they go and visit nerd turned villain, Vector, who actually buys their cookies.
Gru finds out that Vector stole the Great Pyramid and tries to steal it from him, but everything he does fails. The president of Evil Bank, which used to be called Lehman Bros., tells Gru he’s not going to give him any more money until he shows the banker the shrinking ray machine. Regrettably, Vector steals the shrinking machine from Gru.
Gru adopts the three children so he can smuggle robot cookies into Vector’s lair to steal the shrinking ray gun. What Gru does not expect is that the three little girls steal his heart and transform him through their innocent love, goodness and kindness. Will Vector or Gru steal the moon? Who will be the greatest thief of all? What will happen to the three girls? The movie becomes a race to the finish, but the race ends in ways nobody expects.
It is seldom that a movie is clever enough to truly surprise the audience. In many ways, DESPICABLE ME does just that. Right at the beginning, the three little girls each pray a sincere prayer to be adopted. Clearly, their prayers are answered. The movie shows the selfishness and despicable qualities of every person’s heart, but it also shows the transforming power of love, namely the love of the three little girls. Therefore, the heart of the story is a story of redemption.
There are many witty elements to DESPICABLE ME and a few laugh-out-loud moments. However, the movie is more action adventure than it is funny. There’s a lot of cartoon violence. Some of it will be objectionable to discerning parents, such as the use of squid guns, ray guns, piranha guns, hitting, shoving, pushing, wedgies, and so forth. There’s also some scatological humor. Most of the violence, if not all, is very action oriented and not very scary. However, research shows that, when violence looks like fun and not scary, children are more apt to copy it if they have that propensity, so parents need to be cautious.
That said, the ending is so uplifting and redemptive that it overshadows the movie’s failings.
It is seldom that a movie is clever enough to truly surprise the audience. In many ways, DESPICABLE ME does just that. Right at the beginning, the three little girls each pray a sincere prayer to be adopted. Clearly, their prayers are answered. Best of all, the heart of the story is a story of redemption, a story about the transforming power of love. There’s a lot of cartoon violence, slapstick comedy and some scatological moments, however, so parents need to be cautious.