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Goldmember
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Austin Powers: International Man Of Mystery
Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me

Austin Powers: Goldmember Review

Directed By: Jay Roach
Starring: Mike Myers, Mindy Sterling, Seth Green, Beyonce Knowles...other people possibly returning...Verne Troyer, Robert Wagner, Rob Lowe, Michael Caine.

Synopsis: Some pretty wild rumors abounding on this one. The most likely is the one concerning time travel back to the school days of Austin and Dr. Evil when they were friends and the events that were to turn them against one another.

I believe the only reason to go see an Austin Powers movie is for the story. Mike Myers always ensures these tales are intricate, involving and intelligent. Yeah, right. Mike knows better than that.

Austin Powers is Austin Powers is Austin Powers...you either get a kick out of Myers and his humour or you don't. And the range of his humour is from sharp punch lines to low-brow (and at times insipidly childish low-low brow with all of its urine, feces and flatulence humour). Still, when it is being low-brow, sometimes you still can't help but giggle at the flick.

Mike Myers and director Jay Roach use the old (and in my mind, undersized) tactic of throwing so many jokes at the audience something is bound to resonate and spark some laughter. Unfortunately, for large portions of the film, it is a lot of been there-seen that from the two previous outings. Still, despite using the shadows on the silk screen technique yet again, that joke had a capping moment as did another scene where they bring attention to the fact that they have done some of these gags before. Some of it is in the same vein as re-hash, re-hash with a twist as it were.

Myers brings Austin back with his typical overconfidence and sense of fun, as he does with Fat Bastard. But it is Dr. Evil whom I enjoy watching, even in some of the slower moments you are just never sure where Myers is going to go with this character and that random chaos is what makes Dr. Evil so much fun to watch.

The same can not be said of his new title character, Goldmember. Odd looking, sure. Funny sounding, absolutely. But memorable or useful? Not really, although for some reason I did find the whole disgusting world of eating ones own flaking skin funny. I cringed, but laughed while grimacing...interesting combination that.

Along with the now regulars of an Austin film, Seth Green (under used but still funny), Mindy Sterling (always good for a smile), Verne Troyer (Mini-Me steals some scenes and he never says a word) and Robert Wagner (who plays deadpan so well and is always perfectly effective in these films one wonders why no one else uses this man a bit more) we have a couple of newcomers as well.

A lot has been praised about Michael Caine's performance though I personally felt it was totally underwritten and not really a shining example of Caine's deft way with comedy. A great actor whose talents are wasted here.

Fred Savage as a mole with a mole. You've probably seen this bit in the trailer and it always makes me laugh. He's more a prop than a character but is still involved in a very funny scene. The mole bit is funny, Savage never gets a chance to be.

Beyonce Knowles is the real surprise here. She has a way of saying her lines without a sense of irony but has a nice brash comedic style...and one has to admit she looks pretty good all done up as Foxy Cleopatra. However, except for the nice nod to Pam Grier here and there and a few brief Blaxploitation jokes one wonders what happened to the real over the top sexual playfulness between the two leads? Except for a pretty chaste kiss the goings on between Austin and Foxy are pretty tame compared to Austin's behaviour in the previous outings.

Goldmember is not Mike Myers best effort in the celluloid realm, but the film is funny in fits and bits throughout. Make sure to arrive on time though, it would be your loss to miss the opening credit sequence. The first ten minutes is the funniest chunk of the film, a chunk that could have easily been dropped to the final portion and perhaps left the audience leaving with bigger smiles on their faces.

3 stars out of 5. Not great, but not horrible either. You can do a lot worse out there at the theatres without putting any effort into it.

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