Johnny English (2003)
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Directed by Peter Howitt (Anti-Trust, Laws of Attraction, Sliding Doors) made a entertaining comedy that spoofs the films of James Bond and The Naked Gun Trilogy. Atkinson is a delight and Malkovich is at his silliest role to date (He seems to have a real good time in this movie). The film's plot is surprisingly good but you wish, there is more laughs at times. Atkinson's fans won't be disappointed.
DVD has an sharp anamorphic Widescreen (1.85:1) transfer (Also sharp in Pan & Scan transfer) and an good-Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound. DVD Extras are Deleted Scenes, Behind the Scenes Featurette and more. Kids will probably enjoy this more than the adults. Written by Neal Purvis (The World is Not Enough), Robert Wade (Die Another Day) and William Davies (Twins). (*** ½/*****).
Title (Brazil): `Johnny English'
In a Bean kind of way, of course. Now that is where comparison with Bean should stop: Johnny English talks, for one thing, and doesn't just gesticulate around like a bit of a moron. And while he still causes a lot of trouble and shines in his incompetence, he manages to be far more charming and far less annoying than Mr Bean is in a 90 minute movie. Expect lots of visual humour, but also the odd moment of funny dialogue (the "making love" dialogue scene is quite hilarious)
The plot is standard Bond fare: A French tycoon is up to no good, stealing crown jewels and trying to become king of.... England, oddly enough. There is a Bond girl, played by Natalie Imbruglia and sharing more similarities with Sophie Yeoh's butt-kicking bond girl than with the more traditional damsel in distress. But unfortunately, there is no equivalent to Q, nor to M and the movie is a bit too much of a one-man show.
How does it fare then? On the laughter front it was quite satisfying, easily outmanoeuvering the once-too-often repeated Austin Powers, putting anything recent by Leslie Nielsen to shame and being an altogether fine Bond spoof. There is lots of slapstick (including the disgusting kind), but the movie manages to be less over the top and closer to Bond than to old National Lampoon / Mel Brooks movies.
Altogether the movie was pleasantly surprising - better than Bean (which isn't too hard, to be honest) and Austin Powers (although it is a different kind of spoof). Still not brilliant, but a good dose of old-fashioned entertainment. Pity the trailer gave away quite a lot of the best bits.
Plus, the bad guy was supposedly French, what more could you ask for?
Seriously, if you haven't watched this, you really need to.
The best approach of watching this movie is to see it without a lot of expectation and I assure you that you will have a good time.
I'd say that this is NOT one of Atkinson's better moments, and I actually think the picture is stolen by his agent male partner, of the flick - the rookie (I forget his name). He is toned down a lot but he is the one that made me laugh at several places, amongst others the lines "Are you coming over here in a minute, sir?". Won't spoil anything, but if you've seen the movie you know what I refer to.
But, if you're an Atkinson fan, like myself, go and see it. It's not horrible, but it's not fabolous either! Around average, nothing more, nothing less..
English, unlike Powers, is not just a blank space in which the screenwriters can insert gags. He's a character. And there's more to the character than just clumsiness and pomposity. English is endearing because he's manifestly no fool. We know more than he knows, we see the banana skin immediately in front of his feet which he invariably fails to see, and in a way it's his fault he fails to see it himself, but his failure to see it is always something other than a failure of intelligence. He's easy enough to humiliate but, for some reason, hard to hoodwink. It's refreshing, too, that we're allowed to feel for him - when, for instance, he's dismissed from the case. We see Johnny English being devastated, not Rowan Atkinson trying to be funny.
Sure, it's not what it could have been. It's funny without being brilliantly so, and the satire (what there is of it) is on the blunt side. But these merely negative failings aren't enough to kill a film. Its biggest problem may be bad timing. When the script was being written, the anti-French sentiment must have seemed quaint and amusing, harmless because unreal; nobody could have predicted, surely, the sickening wave of hatred (the fact that it was all planned by the likes of Rupert Murdoch does not, alas, make the hatred any less real) that was shortly to sweep over the English-speaking world. Any joke about the French now has a sour taste at best.
This first installment is a passable and average comedy because the formula is well known with 'The Pink Panther' series. It stars clumsy Rowan Atkinson as one man show accompanied by a sympathetic Ben Miller .¨ Johnny English¨ release was the first part of series as the inept and bungler secret agent from MI-7 . The movie gets entertaining and hilarious moments here and there. This slapstick picture contains amusing , funny scenes , fresh and diverting moments but also flaws and gaps . Rowan Atkinson steals the show parodying the ordinary international secret agent , James Bond-alike , including his ordinary faces , grimaces and gestures . Appears as secondaries some prestigious British actors as Tim Piggot Smith , Ben Miller , Kevin McNally and two gorgeous women as Tasha De Vasconcelos and Natalie Imbruglia . The actors seem to enjoy themselves immensely giving funny interpretations . Lively and atmospheric music by Ed Shearmur . Colorful and glimmer cinematography by Remi Adefarasin . The film is regularly penned and directed by Peter Howitt . Several chuckles and gags , the result of which is one acceptable first entry . The flick will appeal to Rowan Atkinson fans who plays stunningly the highly unorthodox agent.
Followed by ¨Johnny English Reborn¨ (original title) that maintains the slapstick franchise with Rowan Atkinson , Gillian Amstrong , Rosamund Pike , Dominic West and directed by Oliver Parker . Johnny is back in action and returns to the role of the accidental secret agent who doesn't know fear or danger in the comedy spy-thriller 'Johnny English Reborn' . In the years since MI-7's top spy vanished off the grid, he has been honing his unique skills in a remote region of Asia , now that the world needs him once again, Johnny English goes into the action .