The animated movie that set off the spin off of many other animated series of movies ,starts with an evil man, Gru tormented when the Pyramid of Giza is stolen by one of his unknown rivals. He then turns to his assistant Dr.Nefario and his minions to outdo his triumph, by shrinking and stealing the moon itself. Realizing that his ambition is costly, he seeks loan from the Bank of Evil.
Mr. Perkins, the president of the bank is impressed by his aspirations and agrees to approve the loan, on one condition that he acquires the shrink ray technology first. Upon finding the person responsible for the theft of the Pyramid of Giza, he openly displays his feud with that man “Vector”. He and the minions successfully steal the ray technology from east asia, when the Vector intercepts and steals it from them. Gru tries to recover the lost artifact and raids the Vectors’ base only to fail at entering his impenetrable fortress. That is when he discovers the three little girls who enter it without any issues to sell cookies or something. So, he decides to adopt them, without even asking if they had parents or something. So, they go with him.
He enters the establishment disguised as one of them. But that won’t be easy as the girls are stubborn and hard to nurture for. When the girls demand a day at a theme park, he reluctantly agrees, plotting to think that he can abandon them there. He cannot do that because he has formed a bond with them. So, he makes a call to Perkins and tells him he has the Shrink ray. But with the minions and the girls disturbing him. He gets fired from his work. He then sells off some of the things he has acquired throughout the years. He wants to build a lab to shrink the moon when it’s nearest to the earth. But that day happens to be when it’s the day the girls have ballet recital.
His assistance Dr. Nefario arranges for them to go back to the Orphanage, seeing that Gru is conflicted about this. Well, basically, regardless of all that, and more he manages to steal the moon. But his girls are kidnapped when he returns. So, he gives the moon back to Perkins’s son Vector in return for the girls. And it then is revealed that the shrink technology is temporary, and the moon reverts back to its original size with a Vector on it.
He re-adopts the girls and lives happy ever after like any other animated movie in the history of the animated movies.