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De­spi­ca­ble Me 3 puts the fo­cus back on its orig­i­nal star, Gru.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Movies - Re­view by MICHAEL CHEANG en­ter­tain­ment@thes­

TO be hon­est, I don’t re­ally re­mem­ber what hap­pened in De­spi­ca­ble Me 2 which was re­leased in 2013.

All I re­mem­ber is that the Min­ions were hi­lar­i­ous to watch, and were part of the big bad guy’s ul­ti­mate plan. Af­ter that I couldn’t wait to watch the solo spin-off Min­ions movie (which I loved as well).

As for the story of Gru and his fam­ily ... well, I didn’t re­ally care if they made an­other movie about them.

De­spi­ca­ble Me 3 changes that though. Yes, the Min­ions are still around, but the spot­light in this new film is on Gru, the orig­i­nal star of the fran­chise. De­spi­ca­ble Me 3 ac­tu­ally makes us care about him and his fam­ily once again.

This time around, Gru (Steve Carell) gets a new arch-neme­sis in for­mer child star-turned-vil­lain Balt­hazar Bratt (Trey Parker), who broke bad af­ter his 1980s ac­tion TV se­ries got can­celled.

Af­ter be­ing out­smarted by Bratt, Gru is fired by his new boss at the Anti Vil­lain League (AVL), along with his wife and fel­low agent Lucy (Kristen Wiig). This has a knock-on ef­fect on his per­sonal life – he starts doubt­ing his pur­pose in life, and his youngest daugh­ter Agnes re­sorts to sell­ing her toys to help out the fam­ily.

Oh, and the Min­ions, fed up of work­ing for a good guy when all they want is to serve a bad guy, de­cide to quit.

Then, Gru dis­cov­ers that he has a twin brother named Dru (also voiced by Carell), who is richer and has more hair. Dru re­veals that bad guy blood runs in their veins, and that their fa­ther was one of the world’s great­est vil­lains ever. He then of­fers Gru a propo­si­tion – to go back to vil­lainy and pull off a heist to steal the world’s largest di­a­mond back from Bratt.

Com­pared to the pre­vi­ous movie, De­spi­ca­ble Me 3 works much, much bet­ter in terms of the de­vel­op­ment of the hu­man char­ac­ters (read: non-Min­ion).

Dru’s lack of vil­lain ex­pe­ri­ence gives Gru a chance to seem com­pe­tent for once, and kind of makes you won­der whether the rea­son he was so for­get­table in DM2 was be­cause he just wasn’t ... bad enough.

The new vil­lain, Balt­hazar Bratt, also helps by giv­ing some sem­blance of a threat, at least, and the con­stant bar­rage of 1980s ref­er­ences are also pretty amus­ing.

The fact that the hu­man char­ac­ters are much more mem­o­rable this time around is also partly due to the fact that the Min­ions are given a slightly smaller role, whereas in the last movie, be­ing part of the bad guy’s plans meant they had a much big­ger pres­ence.

Here, the Min­ions’ an­tics still ac­count for some of the film’s fun­ni­est mo­ments, but they are back to be­ing the adorably funny sup­port­ing acts they were in the first De­spi­ca­ble Me movie.

Not all of it works, and some­times, you kind of miss hav­ing the Min­ions around (es­pe­cially dur­ing the main heist, which could have done with a dash of yel­low to add va­ri­ety to the se­quence).

But for the most part, De­spi­ca­ble Me 3 trudges along like a well-oiled gi­ant ro­bot thanks to the amus­ing Gru/Dru dy­namic, and some ten­der/ cute mo­ments in­volv­ing the lit­tle girls and Lucy’s at­tempts to try and be more of a mother to them.

While the Min­ions will al­ways be the most pop­u­lar as­pect of the fran­chise, De­spi­ca­ble Me 3 is a good re­minder that there is more to this wacky world than those lit­tle yel­low fel­lows.

— UIP Malaysia

Bet­ter hold on to that jet­ski, Gru. Your ca­reer as a good guy is about to sink.

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