Austin Powers in Goldmember (2002)
Review Date: July 26, 2002
Director: Jay Roach
Writer: Mike Myers, Michael McCullers
Producers: Mike Myers, John Lyons
The spy who loves to shag is back for yet another adventure versus the wickedly goofy Dr. Evil, in a plot which features new bad guy Goldmember kidnapping Austin's dad and more threats of world destruction. Traveling back to the 70s and picking up a foxy mama, Austin sets out to recover his daddums while tossing every single sexual innuendo known to man out there. Some stick...most don't.
When I first saw the trailer for the 3rd installment of this series, I thought: "The jig is up". Now that I've seen the movie, I can say that I was partly right, in that this new film really doesn't bring anything new or exciting to the series, and basically just recycles many of its used-up jokes, most of which aren't as funny the second (and sometimes, third) time around. Having said that, it does offer a few entertaining moments and I can definitely see how major Austin Powers fans would continue to get a kick out of it. I personally thought that most of the jokes weren't funny, most of the sketches weren't original and most of the new characters...weren't inspired or interesting. In fact, for someone whose name is actually in the title of the flick, the character of "Goldmember" was as lame as lame can be. Was there anything funny about this dude? In my personal opinion...no! Of course, all comedy is subjective, so I guess you might find something humorous in his shtick, but the Dutchman did nada for me. Beyoncé Knowles, on the other hand, did plenty for me although most of that...was in my pants! (thank you very much) A gorgeous lady with obvious groove for her role, Foxxy Cleopatra worked in the film and added some much needed spark and 70s style, baby! Many of the recurring characters were also not funny this time around, including Fat Bastard, all of Dr. Evil's sidekicks and his son, Scotty, whose one-note joke is pretty played out, in my opinion. Austin Powers' father in the film, which seemed like perfect casting in Michael Caine, also didn't bring much to the proceedings, and actually bored me at several points. As for the whole Fred Savage "mole" joke...I guess I just didn't get it cause I thought it was especially non-humorous.
As for Austin and Dr. Evil themselves, admittedly, they both continued to be somewhat humorous, especially the Doctor, without whom, the film definitely would have stunk to high heaven. Almost every scene with Dr. Evil performing idiocies had me in giggles, including his little insecure mumblings, his back and forths with Mini-Me and their rap video session in jail. The Austin pissing statue scene and the flashback to their "college days" were also quite amusing. By the way, the reason that I am basically reviewing the characters and scenes is because the film really isn't a "story" per se, as much as it is a bunch of characters acting out comedy sketches. Some work, most don't...and if you haven't seen the first or second movie, I suspect that much of it will not be entertaining to you. I quite enjoyed the first two parts of this trilogy myself, but even I was rolling my eyes every now and again. Of course, I can't end my review without making mention of the amazing "cameo" appearances in the film, most of whom show up during its first 5 minutes, and all of which are big names (and I mean...big!) and very funny! That's definitely one part of the movie that was surprising and cool to see. Other than that, expect much of the same jokes as before, expect many of the same characters, a handful of lame new ones and some sporadic laughs, but mostly unsuccessful attempts at keeping a franchise going, one which likely would have benefited from two or more years on the shelf. Not as horrible as its trailers made it out to be, but certainly not remotely as inspired as its predecessors. Check it out on video if you give a shit.
(c) 2015 Berge Garabedian