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Crammed with mixed messages about a creepy adult male figure adopting three little girl orphans, "Despicable Me" is a scattershot attempt at animated comedy that never clicks. In spite of his rude and vengeful behavior toward others, Russian super-villain Gru (voiced by Steve Carell) has a soft spot for playing daddy to three little girls if he can send them out on clandestine missions to bring down his arch rival Vector (Jason Segel). Gru want to be the "greatest villain of all time."
But Vector has stolen Egypt's great pyramids, and now Gru has his sights set on taking away the moon in a game of oneupsmanship. Deep beneath Gru's suburban home lies a factory where an army of yellow steampunk assistants build devices to spec for Gru's evil co-hort Dr. Nefario (Russell Brand).
As a shiny apologia for corporate malfeasance, the film's message, "just because he's a bad guy doesn't mean he's a bad guy," doesn't hold up. The film's feeble 3-D effects only add insult to the injury of its inflated ticket price. Where are Wallace & Gromit when you need 'em?
Rated PG. 95 mins.
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