Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery ★★½

"Sake it to me baby" - Austin Powers... Um

Oh behave! No seriously behave better these jokes are weak.

In Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery, a famed British secret agent freezes himself, so that he can be brought back when his nemesis Dr. Evil returns from space. Powers is woken in the 1990s to stop Dr. Evil from launching a nuclear warhead. What ensues is a strict James Bond parody. I recently watched all 24 Bond films in 8 days (most of them for the first time ever) and that made me want to reacquaint myself with the Austin Powers trilogy with fresh eyes. Back in college, guys would quote these movies so incessantly that I began to hate them and it took a few decades to rewatch but here I am and this is fine I guess.

So much of the satire is specific to the time and hasn't aged well. I don't mean that the satire is out of touch but that it just isn't that funny to watch a person from the 1960s respond to the 1990s unless the writing is really good. For example jokes about the ozone layer aren't as funny when we're concerned about climate change now. Austin Powers mostly, however, relies on physical shock humor from Michael Myers, whose comedy style has definitely passed it's prime efficacy in the mid to late 1990s. I think the best stuff here to watch is the direct parody of the Bond films but even some of that is a little flat.

Comedy has a harder time aging well than most genres, this is no exception.

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