Last night I was able to attend a sneak preview screening of Despicable Me 3, thanks to the generosity of Xfinity, who gave out passes to subscribers. The event was packed, with a lot of families and more children than adults present. Attendees completely filled two large theaters at the Regal complex where the screening was held.
After checking in amidst Minion t-shirts and balloons, attendees were given vouchers for free popcorn and drinks and were able to use a green-screen photo booth, where they could put on props and have their picture taken ‘with a minion’. The mood inside theatre was happy and excited, yet as the lights dimmed and the film began, the numerous children present quieted down to see the main event.
Despicable Me 3 picks up not long after the end of Despicable Me 2, with Gru and Lucy working for the Anti-Villain League shortly after their marriage. Yet Gru’s world is turned upside-down once again when he learns that he has a twin brother, and his entire family flies out to a remote island to meet him. Needless to say, Gru’s brother Dru is also involved in the ‘family business’ of villainy, and he wants the now-reformed Gru to mentor him. As always, Gru finds himself bouncing from crisis to crisis, yet somehow always manages to squeak through when he really needs to do so.
The previous film in the franchise, Minions, suffered criticism for focusing too much on the Minions, who are better suited to playing a secondary role. Many suggested that the movie would have been better if Gru had been in it (in more than a cameo role). These criticisms have been answered with Despicable Me 3, where the Minions play a strong secondary role with their own B-storyline, yet Gru is clearly the star.
While there were definitely some good laughs in the film, Despicable Me 3 does suffer slightly from sequel-itis, where the premise isn’t quite as fresh and fun as it was in the previous films. Still, fans of the franchise will find this a worthy addition and will enjoy seeing their favorite characters on the big screen once again.
After the screening, Xfinity handed out swag bags to children, who were happily chattering about the film all of the way into the parking lot. It was clear that the audience had a great time, and that the screening event was a big success. Many thanks to Xfinity for hosting us.
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