Despicable Me 4 parents guide

Despicable Me 4 Parent Guide

The film sticks closely to the franchise's tried and true formula so kids will love it and parents might find themselves enjoying some of the gags.

Overall B

Theaters: Gru and his family are forced to go into hiding after one of his enemies escapes from prison.

Release date July 3, 2024

Violence B
Sexual Content B
Profanity A-
Substance Use A

Why is Despicable Me 4 rated PG? The MPAA rated Despicable Me 4 PG for action and rude humor.

Run Time: 95 minutes

Parent Movie Review

Gru (Steve Carell) and Lucy (Kristen Wiig) are enjoying their lives as parents to their three girls and a new baby boy. But that idyllic world is disrupted when one of Gru’s archenemies, Maxime (Will Ferrell), escapes from prison and publicly vows revenge. The family is moved to a safe house in a new town and must assume new identities until Maxime is captured. While adjusting to their new life, Gru meets their neighbor’s daughter, Poppy (Joey King), an aspiring villainess wanting to learn from an old pro.

If you have seen any entry in the Despicable Me franchise (excluding the original, which is fantastic), you already know exactly what you’re getting into with this installment. I’d rate all three sequels at around the same level of quality, which isn’t high, but I do praise the franchise for being consistent. The minions are annoying, Gru gets up to antics, Lucy is a flat character, and the girls are adorable but have nothing to do in the plot. It’s a formula at this point.

I think the biggest miss with this production is that there are approximately five subplots taking up time and space, and most of them never amount to anything. The girls seemed to have their own plotlines at the beginning, which I was excited for since they tend to be on-screen ciphers, but then those stories fade awat. There’s just far too much going on, which makes it hard for any character development to fit in edgewise. Aside from the many subplots, the film is teeming with gags, antics, and hijinks, plus the expected high amounts of potty humor. It’s fast paced and overstuffed, which I suppose isn’t the worst thing a children’s movie can be. At least it’s not boring.

That said, I laughed a few times, and the children in the theatre with me seemed to be having a great time. There are far worse options out there, and the low amounts of negative content make it suitable for most audiences. The level of slapstick violence is on par with the rest of the franchise, so parents will know what to expect. A huge high point of this film is Stephen Colbert playing Gru’s snooty rich neighbor: he steals every scene he’s in and more than makes up for the price of admission. I’m sure Despicable Me 4 will be a hit with young audiences, and parents could do a lot worse.

Directed by Chris Renaud, Patrick Delage. Starring Steve Carell, Kristen Wiig, Will Ferrell. Running time: 95 minutes. Theatrical release July 3, 2024. Updated

Watch the trailer for Despicable Me 4

Despicable Me 4
Rating & Content Info

Why is Despicable Me 4 rated PG? Despicable Me 4 is rated PG by the MPAA for action and rude humor.

Violence: There is slapstick cartoon violence throughout. Characters are electrocuted, fall from great heights, are attacked by a honey badger, and get knocked unconscious. Characters fist fight. A man breaks a toe.
Sexual Content: A married couple kiss. A minion’s bare butt is shown as a joke.
Profanity: There are some mild insults such as “loser” and “idiot”.
Alcohol / Drug Use: None.

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Despicable Me 4 Parents' Guide

How do the girls feel about moving to a new town? How do they cope with the changes? Have you ever moved somewhere new? What helped you adapt to the move? What are the best parts of moving somewhere new? What did you learn from the experience?

Loved this movie? Try these books…

Gru’s family are forced to move for safety and although most of us won’t face that kind of danger, moving is a common experience for families. If you want to find books to help your kids through the big changes that come with a move, we suggest the following books.

Chester the Racoon is well known to kids through The Kissing Hand. In A Kiss Goodbye, author Audrey Penn has the young critter face a family move and the emotional upheaval that goes along with it.

Young kids can take a quiet farewell from home in Frank Asch’s Goodbye House. They can also enjoy new discoveries in Marta Altes’ My New Home.

Shirley Hughes brings her trademark empathy and warm illustrations to Moving Molly.

In Alexander, Who’s Not (Do You Hear Me? I Mean It!) Going to Move, Judith Viorst’s young protagonist is having another terrible, no good, very bad day.

For laughs and manic chaos, kids can turn to Stan and Jan Berenstain’s classic The Berenstain Bears’ Moving Day.

Saying goodbye to friends is a painful part of moving. In a Jar by Deborah Marcero tackles this challenge in her tale of two rabbits who have spent their time collecting together.

Confident readers will enjoy The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. This pivotal story in C.S. Lewis’s Narnia series sees four children evacuated to the countryside during World War II. While there, they find a portal to a magical world.

Home Video

Related home video titles:

Previous entrants in this franchise include Despicable Me, Despicable Me 2, Despicable Me 3, Minions, and Minions: The Rise of Gru.

Another story about a villain who has a change of heart and changes sides is Megamind.

A family works together to fight off villains in The Incredibles and The Incredibles 2.