Despicable Me 4 (2024) movie review

“Despicable Me 4” sees beloved former supervillain turned family man Gru (Steve Carell) return to the screen, facing new challenges and old adversaries. Directed by Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda, the film maintains the franchise’s distinctive blend of humor, heartwarming family dynamics and the Minions’ mischievous antics. However, while it aims to recapture the magic of its predecessors, it struggles to surpass them.

Plot Overview

The story begins with Gru enjoying domestic bliss with his wife Lucy (Kristen Wiig) and their adopted daughters. Their peace is shattered when Gru inadvertently rekindles his rivalry with Maxime Le Mal (Will Ferrell), a former classmate turned foe with a penchant for villainy. Forced into hiding, Gru moves his family to an unknown neighborhood with new identities, facing the challenge of fitting in while avoiding Maxim’s relentless pursuit.

Family Dynamics and Humor

The heart of the film lies in its portrayal of Gru’s evolving family dynamics. Carell’s Gru, now a loving father and husband, brings warmth to the character despite the chaos around him. The interactions between Gru, Lucy and their daughters – Margo, Edith and Agnes – are endearing, illustrating the franchise’s ability to balance emotional depth with humor.

Still, the real stars are the Minions, whose slapstick antics often steal the spotlight. Their nonsensical language and unpredictable behavior add moments of humor throughout the film, especially in their transformation into “Mega Minion” and subsequent mishaps.

Visuals and Animation

Visually, “Despicable Me 4” maintains the franchise’s vibrant and detailed animation style. The world is colorful and vibrant, capturing the whimsical charm that audiences have come to expect. However, while the animation impresses, the screenplay feels formulaic, lacking the narrative innovation seen in earlier installments.

Characterization and Performances

Steve Carell once again delivers a stellar performance as Gru, balancing the character’s comedic qualities with genuine emotional depth. Kristen Wiig infuses energy into Lucy, though her character development is somewhat hampered by the overarching plot. Will Ferrell infuses superb villainy into Maxim Le Mal, though the character’s motivations can seem predictable.

Supporting characters, including cameo appearances, add flavor to the narrative, but often feel underutilized or disconnected from the main plot. The film struggles to weave these elements into a coherent whole, with some subplots feeling rushed or unfinished.

Critical Analysis

“Despicable Me 4” succeeds in delivering family-friendly entertainment with a mix of humor and heart. However, it fails to recapture the freshness and simplicity of its predecessors. The story, while engaging, relies too much on familiar tropes and lacks the narrative depth that elevates the previous films in the franchise.

The humor, primarily slapstick, may appeal to younger viewers, but older viewers looking for more sophisticated comedy may find it repetitive. Moments of genuine warmth and humor are present, particularly in the interactions involving the Minions and the main family unit, yet they struggle to keep up with the film’s momentum.


In conclusion, “Despicable Me 4” is a serviceable addition to the franchise, providing laughs and heartwarming moments, but ultimately fails to innovate or surpass its predecessors. Fans of the series will find enjoyment in revisiting familiar characters and settings, particularly with the anarchic charm of the Minions. However, for those seeking a fresh approach or deeper narrative complexity, this installment may disappoint.


Recommended for families and fans of the “Despicable Me” series looking for light-hearted entertainment. Approach with restrained expectations about narrative depth and originality, instead focusing on the film’s visual appeal and comedic moments, particularly those involving the Minions.

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