*******www.innovativecommunications.tv Is the third time a charm? I’m Keith Kelly. My review of “Men in B...
*******www.innovativecommunications.tv Is the third time a charm? I’m Keith Kelly. My review of “Men in Black 3” is coming your way right now.
It’s been a long time since we’ve last seen the Men in Black-10 years since the last sequel, and 15 years since the original. Can there be anything more to say about this movie universe that is relevant for today’s audience and that hasn’t already been said in the first two films? I’m happy to say, the answer is “yes”!
“Men in Black III” has a few elements that still make it well worth watching. The first is the inventive framework that has been fleshed out in this entry by director Barry Sonnenfeld and screenwriter Etan Cohen-the idea that we are far from alone in the cosmos, and that we need a secret group of enforcers to protect the earth from the scum of the universe. That idea was a lot of fun in the first film-less so in the second. It’s freshened up a bit in number 3 with the addition of a time travelling component.
Another element that is key to its success is the pairing of Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones. There have been many odd couples in buddy films-Eddie Murphy and Nick Nolte, Steve Martin and John Candy, Woody and Buzz-but Misters Smith and Jones bring a unique chemistry and charm to the series. It’s a great sweet and sour mixture that has brought about some of the best moments of these movies, and makes them one of films’ finest partnerships.
Adding a unique twist to this formula is the addition of the brilliant Josh Brolin as a younger version of Agent K. He alone is worth the price of admission, perfectly capturing the cadence, look and feel of the character. It’s not just an impersonation-he really steps into Tommy Lee Jones’ shoes, and brings to life a younger, less embittered version of the character. A big surprise for me was how well this casting worked. It really feels like you went back in time-the chemistry still works-yet in a deeper way. The profoundness is also something I didn’t expect. There is an undercurrent of greater emotion that runs throughout this film that didn’t exist in the others. It’s a richer statement about friendship and love, about longing and regret, about doing the right thing even if it’s going to cost you.
Enhancing this more complex feeling is the great new character of Griffin-a spacey space traveller who can see multiple possibilities of reality. Also effective was Jemaine Clement-almost totally unrecognizable as Boris the Animal. Emma Thompson was wasted in the new role as the new head of MIB-Agent O. She had one amusing bit that went on too long, and was mostly included to help the story in the 60s make sense. Possibly they’ll expand her character if they make a fourth film.
The film could have been tightened in a few places, such as in the Chinese restaurant scene, but overall moves at a nice pace-especially once they jump to the 60’s. This is a solid entry into what was becoming a tired series, and actually makes me look forward to a fourth outing-if there ever is another.
I give “Men In Black 3” a grade of “B+”. I’m Keith Kelly.
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