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Just got back from the local movieplex, from an outing with the fam. We saw Despicable Me in Real 3D. Of interest to TTAGencia, the flick is rife with wall-to-wall weaponry, from a shrink ray gun, a freeze ray gun, and a squid gun (don’t ask) to some perimeter home defense missiles that would make Nikita Kruschev blush. All weapons are of the cartoon variety made popular by the practically omnipresent Acme Brand – i.e.: they temporarily inconvenience the victim, but leave not a mark, five minutes later. (Whatever happened to the ‘neutron bombs’ we heard so much about back in the 80s? Inquiring minds wanna know.)

The film, “by” Universal Studios (if by the word “by” you mean not “we did this” but more as if “we rented out our name to an animation plantation somewhere in France, and hired the Frenchy French sharecroppers to work the digital fields for us, largely because the cheese-loving surrender monkeys gave us one Hell of an incentive package to employ their wine-swilling natives”) is actually quite entertaining, has a nice, family-oriented message, and is well-animated.

The voice talent is solid, with Steve Carrell as “Gru,” the protagonist villan, Jason (How I Met Your Mother) Segel as “Vector,” (the antagonist villian), with Russell Brand, Julie Andrews, Kristen Wiig, Will Arnett, and Miranda Cosgrove round out the cast.

It’s a great film for kids and adults alike. My 12-year-old loved it. So did I – there’s something really cool about an evil lair that features the kind of home defense perimeter(s) that Vector’s has. (I particular like the living room with the Lexan® floor that serves as an upper wall for a shark aquarium.) And without giving away any spoilers, be sure to keep your eyes open when Gru heads to the Evil Bank for a loan, especially as to the sign over the door. Priceless.

From a TTAG point of view, it’s got guns, it’s got missiles, it’s got rockets, and a lot of things that go “boom.” What’s not to like?

Despicable Me
Studio: Universal
Directors: Pierre Coffin, Chris Renaud
Writers: Ken Daurio (screenplay), Sergio Pablos (story)
Release Date: 9 July 2010 (USA)
MPAA Rating: PG for rude humor and mild action.
In wide release, in both 2D and Real 3D prints.

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  1. Generally speaking, I'm kind of underwhelmed by 3D. When they use the polarized lens technology (which includes Real 3D), it's not bad, but I still end up having to mess with the glasses (sliding down my nose) which is a little distracting and somewhat annoying. The 3D stuff is a nice gimmick – but it's still a gimmick. I don't really think I'd enjoy the movie any less in 2D, but I've got a 12-year-old who begs to differ. Think of it this way – Toy Story was an awesome movie, and it was shown in 2D. I've not seen Toy Story 3 yet, but I doubt that it's 3D technology will add anything to the value of the pic. Bottom line, you can save the extra scratch for the 3D specs and see it in 2D, unless you're in love with the technology aspect of things.

  2. Thanks for the reply, that's what I thought. I'm another glasses wearer and the extra specs are a PIA. I did see "Avatar" in 3D for the heck of it, and I'm not convinced that the extra $3-4 uplift on the ticket was truly worth it.

  3. As a graphic designer/marketing guy, I've been doing some work with a company involved in the home 3D space. I'm unconvinced it's gonna be anything more than loser technologies like "Quadraphonic Sound" was or DATs for the consumer market. 3D is a blatant attempt to get consumers excited about something, so they'll feel they have to buy the latest and greatest stuff. There is no 3D standard – yet – and early adopters will pay through the nose (and wallet) to be the Guinea pigs on the bleeding edge of technology. If and when engineers perfect 3D without the need for glasses, we'll talk. Until then, it's a gimmick in my book. I don't mind paying a little extra to treat my daughter, but I just don't think it's that compelling a feature to see every movie in 3D.

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