The original Despicable Me is a firm favourite in our house. If we come across it while channel hopping, it usually stays on until the end and still manages to raise plenty of laughs. The second Despicable Me was OK, but not very memorable. The Minions movie was a train wreck, and proved that they’re at their best when in short bursts and as part of someone else’s movie. And now we have a third Despicable Me, which continues the trend set by the second of just being OK, but now with the added feeling that they really should stop making these.
A news report introduces us to 80s TV child star Balthazar Bratt. After a successful run of his own TV show, things went badly wrong for Balthazar when puberty hit and the squeaky voice and zits resulted in Hollywood ditching his show. Balthazar disappeared from the public eye and the report then asks the question ‘where is he now?’. Cut to the ocean, and a diamond heist on a ship which, if you’ve seen the relevant trailer, means you’ve pretty much seen the entire scene. Balthazar uses bubblegum as a weapon, along with a keytar, and enjoys tackling his enemies with 80s inspired dance fights. The scene ends with Gru, naked and caught up in the bubblegum, embarrassing himself as he floats through the city for all to see while a couple of minions enjoy themselves at a beach party. Yep, pretty much the whole original trailer has just played for us.
Gru and Lucy both find themselves sacked from the Anti-Villain league for failing to capture Balthazar during the heist but they don’t have long to think about what to do next before Gru discovers that he has a twin brother called Dru, that he knew nothing about. Dru got to live with his dad while Gru got to live with his mum following their parents split. They all then head off to Freedonia for a family reunion.
The rest of the movie is pretty much a big mess, with far too many dull and pointless subplots. The main story involves the two brothers, getting to know each other and eventually teaming up to recover the diamond from Balthazar once again and to finally capture him. But this is all at the expense of pretty much every other character in the movie. The Minions have already gone off on their own subplot, having left Gru to go in search of a more villain-like life. Ending up in jail, they soon decide that they miss Gru, so break out in order to try and get back to him in time for the end of the movie. And as for the girls – Agnes is on the hunt for a unicorn, because a bloke in the pub said there was one in the woods, Margo is trying to avoid a local boy who has a crush on her and Edith just doesn’t really feature very much at all. And after briefly helping Gru out at the start of the movie, the main focus for Lucy throughout the rest of the movie is to try and be accepted as a mum to the three girls.
The final act, with the brothers working together to stop Balthazar from getting his revenge and making a big mess in Hollywood, is fairly entertaining, and the Minions still manage to raise big laughs in pretty much every scene they feature, but overall this was pretty disappointing.