Universal's Minions, the upcoming prequel/spinoff film of The Despicable Me series, just dropped a brand new trailer, showcasing the globetrotting travails of the apparently-ancient little loveable lackeys who are as short on brains as they are in stature. Besides the typical assortment of poorly-executed illegalities, the Minions find themselves in 1968 London… throwing down with Queen Elizabeth!
The signature brand of missteps and mischief that audiences have come to know and love from the Despicable Me films are well on display in this latest trailer for Minions. This time, we’re getting more of a focus on the plot, which is primarily set in 1968, well before the days of their tenure with Felonious Gru (Steve Carell), when Minions Kevin, Stuart and Bob break away from the pack of their reclusive, idle and masterless kin to venture on an odyssey to find themselves a new master to badly serve. Ending up in the services of the ostentatious Scarlet Overkill (Sandra Bullock), the Minions quickly find themselves on her bad side when her plot to have them steal the crown of Queen Elizabeth goes awry…due to Queen Elizabeth BEATING THEIR ASSES.
The setup for this latest clip will ring familiar to anyone who saw the teaser trailer dropped back in February. We learn that the Minions are part of an ancient species who have roamed the planet well before man crawled out of the primordial soup. They have been wandering aimlessly, looking to serve the most "despicable" masters they could find, only to inevitably fail them miserably; often to the point of fatal consequences. Throughout history, Dracula, Napoleon, Genghis Khan and even a T. Rex have all been lead down the primrose path due their self-sabotaging services. Clearly, judging by the trailer’s depicted dissolution of the brief professional relationship the diminutive trio have with Overkill, the pattern will not be breaking anytime soon.
Minions seems to have everything going for it as far as the long-lucrative family-friendly animated archetype is concerned. Established franchise: Check. Cute, energetic little things jumping around, being funny: Check. Just enough historical and pop-culture references to keep adults awake and engaged: Check. Certainly, when one considers that 2013’s Despicable Me 2 made nearly $1 billion at the box office with $970 million, this prequel tie-in, which also serves to usher in 2017’s Despicable Me 3, seems to be as sure-fire of hit as any project that has come along.
Based on what we’re seeing, the film seems to be getting by on the concept that the little yellow Minions, for all their lack of comprehensible lines, serve as cute, hilarious foils to a broader, complex world that they’ll probably never truly understand. Whether that concept can stand the test of scrutiny in a feature-length film without Carell’s Gru remains to be seen.
Minions gets set to violate fire hydrants and unwittingly stop evil by serving it when it hits theaters on July 10.