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In a happy suburban neighborhood surrounded by white picket fences with flowering rose bushes, sits a black house with a dead lawn. Underneath is Gru, planning the biggest heist in the history of the world. He is going to steal the moon (yes, the moon!).
Despicable is an animated film produced by Universal Pictures. it was directed by Chris Renaud and Pierre Coffin. The screenplay was written by Ken Daurio, Cinco Paul and Sergio Pablos. Despicable will become the first film in the Despicable Me franchise. The franchise will later spawn sequels such as Despicable Me 2 and spin-off series such as Minions.
Pablo pitched the idea for the movie about a villain who becomes good after befriending a trio of orphans. The executives accepted his idea due to how unique it was. Ken Daruio and Cinco Paul start fleshing out the storyline. For the voice actors, John Cohen, the producer, wanted a casting that had the best improvisational comedians to bring out the level of spontaneity and the naturalistic performances. The animation of Despicable Me was inspired by Charles Addams and Edward Gorey sensibility. For music, Pharrel Williams and Hans Zimmer composed a number of songs to mirror the experiences of the characters for the ambiance.
When an unknown villain steals the Great Pyramid of Giza, Gru decides to take it a step further as he reveals his grand plans to his minion and Dr. Nefario by stealing the moon, using a shrink ray. Though, Gru doesn't have the expenses for his plan, so he seeks a loan from Mr. Perkins, the president of Bank of Evil. Mr. Perkins accepts Gru's proposal to steal the moon if Gru proves that he can steal a shrink ray. When Gru tries to steal a shrink ray from a secret base in Asia, Vector swoops in and steals the item from Gru.
In his attempt to steal the shrink ray, Gru gets mangled up by Vector's booby traps. When Gru spots Margo, Edith, and Agnes visiting Vector's residence as girl scouts, Gru is struck by a brilliant idea. He adopts the three young girls from the orphanage, Miss Hattie's Home for Girls. His plans to use the girls in his plan to retrieve the shrink ray has fallen aside when Gru starts falling for them. Gru manages to steal the shrink ray using cookie bots that the girls had in their cookie boxes. Along the way home, Gru decides to drop the girls at the amusement park to get away from them. Though, he has to be with them to provide adult supervision.
At Gru's residence, Gru calls Mr. Perkins who decides to go with a younger villain, his son Vector, to do the plan. Mr. Perkins informs his son that Gru has the shrink ray. Faced with a decision to steal the moon or attend the ballet recital for the girls, Gru goes with his plans to steal the moon after Dr. Nefario has Miss Hattie take the girls back to the orphanage. When Gru steals the moon, Vector calls Gru to hand him the moon after kidnapping Margo and the girls. Gru manages to get into Vector's fortress. However, Vector escapes via a a rocket. Dr. Nefario rescues Gru and informs him that shrink ray's effect on larger objects. The large the object, the quicker the effects wear off. As the moon increases inside Vector's rocket, Gru manages to save Edith and Agnes. Margo leaps out and grabs Gru's grappling hook. With the help of the minions, Gru and his family reunites. While Margo and the girls give a ballet recital for Gru and rest of family, Vector is left stranded on the moon.
- Steve Carell as Gru
- Jason Segel as Victor "Vector" Perkins
- Russell Brand as Dr. Nefario
- Julie Andrews as Marlena
- Will Arnett as Mr. Henry Perkins
- Kristen Wiig as Miss Hattie
- Miranda Cosgrove as Margo
- Dana Gaier as Edith
- Elsie Fisher as Agnes
- Pierre Coffin as Tim, Bob, Mark, Phil, Stuart
- Chris Renaud as Dave
- Jemaine Clement as Jerry
- Danny McBride as Fred McDade
- Jack McBrayer as Carnival Barker, Tourist Father
- Mindy Kaling as Tourist Mother
- Ken Jeong as Talk Show Host
The CG for the character designs are done by Carter Goodrich who was known for Ratatouille. He made them caricatures of real folks. For the Minions, they were not in Sergio Pablos's original pitch. Janet Healy stated that Minions were a melding of the talents of each director. For the Minions' complex language, Coffin designed the language to be more about sound instead of making a meaning.
Despicable Me was met with generally positive reviews. On Rottentomatoes.com, the film was given an 81% based on 191 reviews, indicating that the film is considered "fresh." Overall, the consensus on Rottentomatoes was that the film intelligently borrowed the right elements from other properties such as Looney Tunes and Pixar movies, but had a few twists of its own. On Metacritic,com the film reviewed similar ratings from critics. Based on 35 critics, the film scored a 72 out of 100.