Archives for posts with tag: Michael York

Unpredictability is a key element of humor. Part of the problem with comedy sequels is that you know most of the jokes already. “Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me” (1999) is like listening to a greatest hits album. It’s well crafted and true to the first installment of the spy-sendup franchise, but that’s also the problem. You want some new stuff, too. And that’s another problem. Heather Graham is great as Austin’s American counterpart but the Fat Bastard and Mini Me characters are so creepy and get so many scenes, it makes the whole thing predictable AND kinda gross.

All of us who live in the South know that hot, sticky days make one a little out of sorts. So imagine how an Englishman might feel in Jamaica in the 1800s, before the advent of HVAC. “Wide Sargasso Sea” (1993) explores this topic, perhaps unintentionally. It tries to get romantic and mystical and even a little sociopolitical as we witness arranged marriages, witchcraft and the aftermath of emancipation. But at its core, the story is Limeys Can’t Take the Heat. Otherwise, how can you explain not being happy with a free plantation, a beautiful woman and an island paradise?

 

Mike Myers hasn’t made a bunch of great movies, but he has struck gold a handful of times. “Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery” (1997) is an example of Myers at his best. His genius is attention to comic detail, so having screenwriter Myers star as a swinging ’60s Brit in a send-up of James Bond movies guaranteed it that would be crammed full of big jokes and little jokes (and witty asides to reward the initiated). It’s almost too detailed. The Roger Moore-era Bond films were a little hokey, plotwise. Myers seems to be mostly playing off that vibe.