Third Austin Powers Shows Good, Bad Sides of Myers
- Thursday, June 20, 2002
Austin Powers in Goldmember - PG-13
Best for: Mature older teens and adults.
The plot: Three years have passed since Austin Powers (Mike Myers) faced his archenemy, Dr. Evil (Mike Myers). This time, Dr. Evil and his accomplice Mini-Me (Verne Troyer) team up with bad guy Goldmember (Mike Myers) and hatch a time-traveling scheme to take over the world. Part of the plan involves kidnapping England's most renowned spy and Austin's father, Nigel Powers (Michael Caine). When Austin visits 1975, he joins forces with his old flame, Foxxy Cleopatra (Beyonce Knowles), to find a way to save his father and stop Dr. Evil and Goldmember from taking over the world. Fred Savage, Robert Wagner, Michael York, The Osbournes and a cast of celebrities also appear.
The good: Yeah baby! This third installment to the series is another tribute to Myers genius as a producer, writer and actor who can take on multiple starring roles. This third edition is better than the second, The Spy Who Shagged Me, because this one isn't as offensive. But don't get me wrong: There are plenty of disgusting scenes with Fat Bastard and Goldmember.
This time around there's an all-star cast who make cameo appearances and/or are part of a movie-within-the-movie. The studio has asked critics not to reveal who the stars are, but I can assure you they are big names. You will be delighted and surprised. The star-studded opening "powers" the movie from beginning to end.
Myers is a genius, plain and simple. The guy not only has an uncanny ability to write hilarious pop culture material, but he plays a variety of characters (in one disguise he's hardly recognizable), each different in nature and appearance. Powers is groovy with his "mojo," bad teeth and out-of-date hair and clothing. Dr. Evil is fiendishly funny with his raised finger, sarcastic comments and Mini-me strapped to his chest. Fat-Bastard is super gross as a Sumo wrestler, but it's Myers' newest character, Goldmember, who is perhaps the weirdest of all, with his penchant for eating dead skin that he picks off his sunburned head and his admiration for his gold-covered genitalia. Seth Green plays the son, a wannabe evil leader-in-training. Knowles does a decent job of portraying a Pam Grier type of character from those '70s black exploitation films. And Savage plays Number Three, who's also "The Mole," a double agent with has a giant black mole on his face.
In addition to the fun and silliness, the story offers a few parenting lessons, a fantastic soundtrack (with Knowles and Myers each singing two songs), and Austin's positive attitude, which keeps the story light and fun.
The bad: As wonderful as Myers is and as creative as his movies are, there's an element of sick humor and offensive language that makes the movie appropriate for mature audiences only. In this case, most of the crude dialogue and situations refer to human anatomy or bodily functions. The foul language (lots of bathroom humor and gross-out terms) and disgusting behavior (urinating in corner, sitting on toilet, Mini-me humping a woman's leg, Britney Spears' head blowing up) will probably be seen by young people as funny, but I found some of it to be plain ol' disgusting.
Offensive language: Profanity (and even a few religious profanities), but mostly British slang and crude dialogue. Sexual innuendoes refer to the male anatomy of a couple of characters. One of the returning characters is named "Fat Bastard" (also played by Myers). He's extremely overweight, appears almost nude as a Sumo wrestler and delights in making disgusting sexual references to other characters.
Sexual situations: Lots of sexual innuendoes (especially using British slang) in the dialogue. Sexy clothing reveals cleavage on some women. One scene shows a man in bed with a woman, but she gets up and leaves.
Violence: Lots of gunplay and spoof spy-action. Several characters are hit or punched, Sumo wrestlers fight, and Britney Spears wears an outfit that shoots bullets out of her bra (her head is shot at and explodes).
Parental advisory: This is not a movie for young teens because of the language, crude material and offensive behavior.
It's a wrap: I took my 16-year-old son and 18-year-old nephew to see this movie, and they both thought it was very funny. They liked the retro clothes, hairdos and jokes. I'm a fan of Myers and think he's been a genius with these three movies, but I have to admit that several scenes were gross and offensive to me.
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