MInions and Thor Film Reviews

Minions = Smiley Face, Thor = Not So Much…


Tristan Medd, Staff Writer

Minions: The Rise of Gru

A sequel to the hit movie Minions, itself being a sequel to the Despicable Me series, is surprisingly funny and entertaining. A lot of the jokes rely on the minions doing funny things and physical humor that involves small yellow tic tacs proves surprisingly universal in its hilarity and adorableness. This, included with a variety of adult jokes and more complex humor makes this more enjoyable for an older audience, and it is clear how this movie became extremely popular (outside of its fame as an online meme). Though Minions 2 still falls back on the host of fart jokes that kickstarted the franchise, they are limited, inoffensive, and easy to overlook.

The animation is just as fluid and impressive as it has always been, and the overall aesthetic of weirdness is just as enjoyable now as it was in the first Despicable Me movie. On the story side of things, the majority of the minion-focused content proves largely engaging, and the consistency of the ridiculousness and the speed at which the jokes are told keep the audience tied to the screen. The titular “Rise of Gru” aspect, however, feels very rushed, with very little emotional development. In fact, none of the main characters get much development. This movie is shockingly short at 79 minutes without credits, and it is over far too soon. Its run time, combined with the fact that most of the movie is focused on the yellow guys, makes all of the side plots feel rushed and diffuse. Steve Carrel’s  seemingly flat and unenergetic performance as young Gru, makes the human story more of a struggle to sit through. This all culminates in the third act feeling a bit forced and very rushed.

For young kids and their parents, the movie hits the target demographic.  Overall, for an adolecsent audience this movie is worth watching as silly fun if you have nothing else to do. If you’re looking for quality, go watch a Pixar movie, but if you’re just looking for a fun way to spend an hour and change, this is the way to go.


Thor: Love and Thunder

The first thing you notice about this new Marvel entry in the most expensive TV show ever, is the cloying nature of its humor. If this doesn’t immediately drag you in, get out! This movie is so filled with jokes and Marvel one-liners that it is very hard to take anything that happens seriously. This is very representative of modern Marvel, and Thor: Love and Thunder is just the first casualty in the ever-increasing war that is Superhero fatigue.  The world is starting to see that Marvel has reduced itself to cliché plotlines and dumb jokes, and as the DC universe begins to run the same path, it is very hard to care about anything superhero anymore.

Other than that, Thor 4 falls into the same formula as all other recent Marvel movies. Big bad villain, wisecracking hero, entertaining sidekicks, artificial stakes. The kicker to this movie is that Jane, the love interest from the first two movies has returned, and she is just as uninteresting now as she was then (she just causes more continuity errors this time). Thor himself is the same jokester from Ragnarok, and the characters around him are the same as from Ragnarok, making out very hard not to see this as something of a Ragnarok clone, as none of the characters have story beats that differ too far from the series’s last installment.

The villain is a supposed “godkiller” who does most of his god killing offscreen. The fact that the villain in this movie kills gods because he believes them selfish and hurtful could introduce and very interesting moral conundrum into this movie, but the writing fails to grasp this goal and the humor cloaks whatever serious moral dilemma iremains. The re-introduction of Thor and Jane’s romantic relationship is interesting at first, but the eventual emotional payoff is again blocked by the agressively joke-focused tone of the whole movie. Every character feels like they’re trying to be Tony Stark, and none of it is as enjoyable as it used to be. 

Overall, this movie is pretty Marvel standard, and not aggressively interesting. If you are looking for more Marvel fluff and love the way their universe has been heading, this is the movie for you. If, however, you too have gained the Marvel fatigue now sweeping the country, this really isn’t all that worth the watch.