tek's rating:

Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (PG-13)
IMDb; Rotten Tomatoes; TV Tropes; Warner Bros.; Wikia; Wikipedia
streaming sites: Amazon; Google Play; iTunes; Movies Anywhere; Vudu; YouTube

Caution: spoilers, baby, yeah!

A spoof of spy movies like the James Bond series, and of the 1960s in general. It starts in 1967, with an evil genius called Dr. Evil (Mike Myers), who has apparently been consistently thwarted by a British superspy named Austin Powers (also played by Myers, though the characters look quite different). So, he wants to kill Austin. We soon see that Austin is quite famous (which makes perfect sense, for a spy), as crowds of cheering fans chase him around London. (He's apparently a fashion photographer, which would actually make some kind of sense as a cover, I guess. But I think people probably know he's a spy, too.) Anyway, he's "rescued" from his screaming fans by his partner, Mrs. Kensington (Mimi Rogers). As she drives his car, they receive a call on a videophone from a guy at British Intelligence (part of the Ministry of Defense) named Basil Exposition (Michael York), who informs them that Dr. Evil has set a trap for Austin at the Electric Psychedelic Pussycat Swinger's Club. Austin says, "We'll be there." And I'm all like, "Right. Because that's what one does when one knows a trap has been set for them. Walk into it." However, the trap is ridiculously easily thwarted, and Austin and Mrs. Kensington (who's dressed rather like Mrs. Peel from "The Avengers") give chase to Dr. Evil, who cryogenically freezes himself in a capsule which launches into orbit.

Thirty years later (1997, when the movie came out), the capsule returns to Earth. We learn that Austin had himself cryogenically frozen, to be revived whenever Dr. Evil returned. Because, obviously, he's the only one who could ever stop him. Basil assigns an agent named Vanessa Kensington (Mrs. Kensington's daughter, played by Elizabeth Hurley) to work with Austin, get him acclimated to the 90s. Meanwhile, Dr. Evil has a meeting with his henchmen, including Number 2 (Robert Wagner), who runs a legitimate business for him called Virtucon, and Frau Farbissina, Random Task, and Paddy O'Brien. Oh, and Mustafa (Will Ferrell), though Dr. Evil immediately has him killed, for a reason I won't get into. Dr. Evil's first couple of ideas for holding the world ransom won't work, because of recent events of which he was unaware, having been frozen. But he finally decides to just steal a nuclear warhead. It's unclear why he feels the need to bother with any of this, since Virtucon is a multi-billion dollar company, and he doesn't need the money... but hey, that's why he's evil, baby.

Um... so I'm watching the movie and intermittently pausing it to write a bit more here. Of course I saw the movie years ago, but I'm just reviewing it in 2012, you know. I should say that Dr. Evil has a son named Scott (Seth Green), who was, like, made sometime while Dr. Evil was frozen, using sperm he'd frozen before being... frozen. But Scott wants nothing to do with him. Meanwhile, Austin wants to shag Vanessa, though she wants nothing to do with him. Um... Austin will have to face a number of Dr. Evil's henchmen, at different times. And at one point (after Vanessa actually starts liking him, because she's drunk), Austin gets a video call from Basil on a computer... which is funny because the quality of the video isn't as good as what they had thirty years ago. Anyway, Austin's supposed to be investigating Virtucon (which Intelligence suspects of being involved with Dr. Evil), though mostly he just spends his time being groovy, or whatever. But Basil tells him to go to the penthouse apartment of Alotta Fagina, who works for Number 2, where he uncovers information about Project Vulcan.

Look, um... a lot of stuff happens. And not much happens. I dunno. There's a drill that's going to drill into the center of the earth and detonate the nuclear warhead there. And a relationship begins to develop between Austin and Vanessa, which is threatened by Austin's swinging 60s ways. And at one point he has to fight off some Fembots (sexy androids with weaponized breasts, which were created by Frau Farbissina). And of course there's a final battle in which the good guys defeat the bad guys, but Dr. Evil escapes, vowing revenge. The whole movie is redonkulous, but hilarious. I love how it lampshades so many spy movie cliches, and stuff. And it had lots of cool music. And I liked how the scenes are intercut with groovy clips of Austin and the band Ming Tea (which later has a song, "BBC," during the end credits). And the characters are all great caricatures, basically, particularly Austin and Dr. Evil. And... I dunno what else to say. I'm leaving out some details, though one will be revealed at the start of my review of the next movie. I fear my review doesn't do this movie justice, but... it really is pretty awesome. Especially when you're not stopping it periodically to write bits of a review.

comedy index
spy index
International Man of Mystery * The Spy Who Shagged Me * Goldmember