(Photo by Illumination / courtesy Everett Collection)

All Illumination Movies Ranked

It’s not easy to break into the major American animation scene when it’s already dominated by the likes of Pixar, DreamWorks, Blue Sky, Laika, and more — but Illumination found a way. Founded just over a decade ago in 2007, the studio stole hearts from the get-go with Despicable Me, which has spawned an entertainment empire including two movie sequels and a Minions spin-off for its ubiquitous endearing/annoying yellow boys. Meanwhile, films like The Grinch and Sing have solidified Illumination’s game plan of making upper mid-budget films with global appeal, which means the studio has yet to have a commercial dud. Meanwhile, they’ve got a Mario movie in the works for 2022.

And now Illumination is franchising beyond Gru and crew, with Sing 2 releasing next year, and Secret Life of Pets 2 now hitting theaters. With that, we’re ranking every Illumination movie by Tomatometer!


Hop (2011)

Adjusted Score: 28.685%
Critics Consensus: It's impressively animated, but Hop's script is so uninspired that not even James Marsden's frantic mugging can give it any bounce.
Synopsis: For the past 4,000 years, the Easter Bunny has brought joy and candy to kids all across the globe; however,... [More]
Directed By: Tim Hill

Adjusted Score: 58.173%
Critics Consensus: Dr. Seuss' The Lorax is cute and funny enough but the moral simplicity of the book gets lost with the zany Hollywood production values.
Synopsis: The 3D-CGI feature Dr. Seuss' The Lorax is an adaptation of Dr. Seuss' classic tale of a forest creature who... [More]
Directed By: Chris Renaud, Kyle Balda

Adjusted Score: 62.157%
Critics Consensus: The Secret Life of Pets 2 doesn't teach its animated stars any new narrative tricks -- but for fans of the original, this funny, energetic sequel should still satisfy.
Synopsis: THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS 2 will follow summer 2016's blockbuster about the lives our pets lead after we leave... [More]


Minions (2015)

Adjusted Score: 62.78%
Critics Consensus: The Minions' brightly colored brand of gibberish-fueled insanity stretches to feature length in their self-titled Despicable Me spinoff, with uneven but often hilarious results.
Synopsis: The story of Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment's Minions begins at the dawn of time. Starting as single-celled yellow organisms,... [More]
Directed By: Pierre Coffin, Kyle Balda


Despicable Me 3 (2017)

Adjusted Score: 66.608%
Critics Consensus: Despicable Me 3 should keep fans of the franchise consistently entertained with another round of colorful animation and zany -- albeit somewhat scattershot -- humor.
Synopsis: Illumination, who brought audiences Despicable Me and the biggest animated hits of 2013 and 2015, Despicable Me 2 and Minions,... [More]


The Grinch (2018)

Adjusted Score: 66.524%
Critics Consensus: The Grinch gives the classic Seuss source material a brightly animated update that's solidly suitable for younger viewers without adding substantially to the story's legacy.
Synopsis: Each year at Christmas they disrupt his tranquil solitude with their increasingly bigger, brighter and louder celebrations. When the Whos... [More]


Sing (2016)

Adjusted Score: 77.519%
Critics Consensus: Sing delivers colorfully animated, cheerfully undemanding entertainment with a solid voice cast and a warm-hearted -- albeit familiar -- storyline that lives up to its title.
Synopsis: A koala impresario stages a grand singing competition for the world's animals in order to save his elegant theater in... [More]

Adjusted Score: 81.378%
Critics Consensus: Fast-paced, funny, and blessed with a talented voice cast, The Secret Life of Pets offers a beautifully animated, cheerfully undemanding family-friendly diversion.
Synopsis: For their fifth fully-animated feature-film collaboration, Illumination Entertainment and Universal Pictures present The Secret Life of Pets, a comedy about... [More]


Despicable Me 2 (2013)

Adjusted Score: 80.523%
Critics Consensus: Despicable Me 2 offers plenty of eye-popping visual inventiveness and a number of big laughs.
Synopsis: Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment's worldwide blockbuster Despicable Me entertained audiences around the globe in 2010, grossing more than $540... [More]


Despicable Me (2010)

Adjusted Score: 86.609%
Critics Consensus: Borrowing heavily (and intelligently) from Pixar and Looney Tunes, Despicable Me is a surprisingly thoughtful, family-friendly treat with a few surprises of its own.
Synopsis: A mysterious criminal mastermind has stolen one of the pyramids in Egypt, sparking a fit of jealous envy in evil... [More]

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