As their home planet died, Megamind (Will Ferrell) and Metro Man (Brad Pitt) were sent to Earth, where the two outsiders embarked on opposite paths. Metro Man became a beloved super hero, while Megamind chose a life of villainy.
After discovering Metro Man’s weakness, Megamind sets a trap and destroys his nemesis, but without his noble counterpart, he grows bored and listless.
When Reporter Roxie Ritchi (Tina Fey) inspires him to create a new superhero, a yin to his yang, Megamind accidentally bestows super powers on her lazy cameraman Hal Stewart (Jonah Hill), who rejects Megamind’s hero training and becomes a super villain named Tighten instead.
With Metro Man out of the picture, the only one who can save Metro City from Tighten’s evil plan is Megamind.
David Cross is hysterical as Megamind’s lackey, Minion, the chemistry between Fey and Ferrell is excellent, and Pitt’s disillusioned super hero is fantastic. Most super heroes struggle to balance their personal desires versus the needs of the world, but ultimately choose to embrace their destiny as Savior because the good of the many outweighs the good of the few, but, refreshingly, Metro Man rejects this formula.
Unfortunately, Despicable Me (2010) cast a considerable shadow over the film. Both feature villains who transform into heroes to save the world and supporting characters named Minion, but Megamind is a more straightforward parody of the superhero genre which nails its subject matter and asks thought-provoking questions about purpose and identity.
When Alfie (Anthony Hopkins) is reminded of his mortality, he begins a regimented exercise program and leaves his wife of forty years, Helena (Gemma Jones) for a younger woman, Charmaine (Lucy Punch).
When the promiscuous Charmaine gets pregnant, Alfie wants a DNA test to confirm his paternity, but she refuses the test because she finds the child’s paternity irrelevant.
After their separation, Gemma relies on Cristal, a fortune-teller with dubious connections to the afterlife, to guide her in her new life.
Alfie and Gemma’s daughter, Sally (Naomi Watts) is married to Roy (Josh Brolin), a once heralded novelist, who blames his wife for his inability to write a second novel. He obtains the manuscript of man killed in a car accident and claims the work as his, but unfortunately, the man survived and will soon expose Roy as a fraud.
Meanwhile, Sally contemplates an affair with her boss, Greg (Antonio Banderas), but learns he’s already sleeping with her assistant. Determined to make something of her life, she asks her mother for a loan to open her own art gallery, but is denied because it’s a bad astrological time according to Cristal.
This film is Woody Allen’s most straightforward flirtation with nihilism. Very little done in this life has any real permanence. Homes will rot, works of art will be forgotten. Our favorite writers will fade as new authors take their place and fill the holes in our heads.
Ironically, the film opens with a quote from one of the few people to achieve a real measure of immortality. Five hundred years later, Shakespeare’s plays are still performed and discussed. Even nonreaders hold his name with reverence and awe.
But in the end, the bard may have been more right than he realized. Recent studies indicate fewer and fewer liberal arts colleges require a course in Shakespeare. Some people may make a louder sound or get angrier, but in the end it still means nothing; in the end, we all get a visit from the tall, dark stranger.