Friday, June 22, 2012


Been a while, gang ... Okay, so I'm lazy. Sue me.

I ended up seeing MIB3 ... twice, count 'em, and believe you me, not my first choice. Movies are pricey, and I sure as hell don't make that much. That said, I had a lot of fun both times. Primarily, it was a leg up over Men In Black II. It had heart and wit, and Josh Brolin blew me the frak away. 

But ... and this is a pretty damn big 'but', the opening scenes of the film, the prison break, the funeral of Zed, and pretty much everything leading up to Tommy Lee Jones' line, "I hate to drag you away from your video-games," I was hella leery about what I was watching. Actually, for the first 20 or so minutes, I looked exactly like this.

Heinlein had obviously never watched the opening to MIB3 when he  wrote,
"They laugh because it hurts so much."
Suffice it to say, I wasn't impressed by the opening.

His stare just burns with fatherly approval.

But then, around the time Agent K vanishes due to the escape and time jump of Boris the Animal to the past (July 16, 1969), to kill the legendary Man In Black before he can shoot of young Boris' arm and imprison him for forty years, the film kicks off. The jokes are funnier, mostly because Will Smith's comedy is at its best when things are working against him, from drinking the little girl's chocolate milk to the brain parasite that might kill him at any second being the lesser of two evils, and we have an emotional investment. What can be said? Tommy Lee Jones is endearing with all his cuddly warmth.

So, with the help of a (alien/human?) burnout who owns a small electronics store, Agent J time jumps into the past, where I geeked out instantly at the plethora of classic cars (I'm a Supernatural fan, don't judge me). There is a fair bit of amusement about how out of place Will Smith is in the 60s, and seeing Josh Brolin in action was fantastic.

I'm gonna blame the recession of his hairline ....
Josh Brolin plays K to a T (what does that even mean, anyways?) and is so convincing as Tommy Lee Jones it's almost frightening. The dynamic is damn near identical between the two characters, (Right down to the line, 'I'm beginning to see why we don't talk in the future.') However, we are still shown a happier, almost ... dare I say, carefree Agent K, and it is one of several recurring themes between young Agent K and J is figuring out what happens July 16, 1969 that changes Agent K into such an stone-cold sourpuss.

The obligatory finale takes place at the Apollo 11 lunar launch, (obligatory in that, the moment they established the date, where else would the showdown take place) which really mucked with my head considering all I could think about for the final half of the film was that roughly around that same time, the Doctor was saving the planet from the Silence. And then my brain drifted off into thinking about Torchwood/MIB crossover and my brain melted. I may not swing that way, but if Will Smith makes that suit look good, I bet Barrowman would make it look even better .... okay I'm back. And straight.

The film also has several fun characters replacing the old, no more Frank the talking pug (although he is referenced) and the worms are reduced back to a small role near the start. I like this. The second film seemed inundated with taking jokes from the first film and redressing them. I appreciate the inclusion of Grif and ... well, mainly Grif. He be cool. His opening monologue about possible futures and J's reaction were, in my mind, priceless.

Also, Boris the animal, while not an overly engaging character, I found amusing, if only because of the nagging feeling that I recognized that voice. After looking it up, I slapped myself for nerd-fail, indeed having recognized none other than what's-his-nuts from Flight of the Concords (his name is Jemaine Clement).

And as Agent K once said, "You have to trust the pie."

Now I want pie.

So overall, I really did enjoy the film. It was what it was, and when all is said an done, it even did jerk the heartstrings a bit. Not overly, and luckily it was done with enough sincerity not to come across as contrived. As Grif said, "Where there is death, there will always be death."

~ Godzello

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