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The Statesman

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The Statesman

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    THIRD TIME AROUND, AUSTIN POWERS TASTES STALE

    It’#146;s difficult to get big names like Tom Cruise, Gwenyth Paltrow and StephenSpielberg together without a 100 million dollar film-making budget. When twofilms gross well over that, and a third is scheduled to release, you can betall three would show up for the new movie.

    This weekend, Austin Powers: Goldmember hit the theaters with these big namestars and more. A poll on CNN asked opening day who was more recognizable: MikeMyers (staring as Austin Powers) or Pierce Brosnan (star of the previous threeJames Bond flicks).

    The poll itself was linked to an article arguing that the Austin Power movies,spoofs of the James Bond films, have become as recognizable as the originaldouble-o-seven flicks.

    Hours after the movie was released, the poll and the article were pulled fromthe main page of the CNN website. It seemed clear that this Austin Powers wouldgross less than its two now on DVD counterparts.

    New twists are presented in each character from the previous Austin Power movies.Dr. Evil, now apprehended, works hand-in-hand with Mister Origatio’#146;s evilengineering corporation. He also works with Goldmember, a Danish evildoer propelledby the power to manipulate his body in odd ways.

    Dr. Evil, Fat Bastard and the new Goldmember are all played by Mike Myers.Austin Powers (also Mike Myers), meanwhile, is introduced to a new tag-teamof good-doers, none of which are played by him, from a Mole with a mole (funny?)played by generation-y actor Fred Savage of The Wonder Years fame to the newfemale sidekick Foxy Cleopatra (Beyonce Knowles).

    With new characters comes new drama. The smaller drama includes family issueson both the evil and the good sides. On the evil side of things, Dr. Evil’#146;sson, Scott (Seth Green), jealous of Mini Me’#146;s old role as Dr. Evil’#146;ssidekick, wins Dr. Evil’#146;s affection and Mini Me defects. On the good sideof things, Austin Powers’#146;s newly introduced father (Micheal Kane), is spinnedas a father who skipped graduation, later works to redeem himself fighting Dr.Evil’#146;s henchmen.

    Turning our attention to the main plot, Dr. Evil and his henchmen develop ‘PreparationH’, the new secret project used to destroy the world (this time via anasteroid flooding the earth). Dr. Evil, who once again asks for too much money,begins to execute his plans, only to have Austin Powers and his henchmen tryto stop him.

    There are of course some funny moments. A Jay-Z rap video in a Georgia jailwith Dr. Evil and Mini Me, more shadow puppet humor, Austin Powers acting likea water fountain and Fat Bastard as a sumo wrestler in Japan.

    Ultimately, this review is clich’eacute;, but it fits, the Austin Powers serieshas lost its charm. Once considered a novelty, the use of a Mini-Cooper wasjust one over-the-top ad of many in this film. Mike Myers has single handedlymade Minority Report’#146;s prediction of the world fifty years from now asa bombardment of capitalism a reality.

    Moviegoers are usually forced to sit through advertisements BEFORE a film begins,but you have to give this Austin Powers the thumbs down for subjecting viewersto commercials throughout the dialogue of the movie as well.

    Perhaps it’#146;s just that the third time you tell a really great joke, itwon’#146;t be as funny. Perhaps it truly is a bad film. It seemed unclear whatGoldmember’#146;s role really was, or how half of the characters presented werepart of the film in any way.

    Ultimately, Austin Powers is an amusing gag a minute, and many of the gagsare as interesting and funny as the Whoopie Cushion. One cannot help but noticeJohn Travolta’#146;s cameo appearance near the film’#146;s end, having workedhis way from Pulp Fiction to Battlefield Earth, his appearance seemed very fitting,as Austin Powers could very well follow his path of failure. Although I willbe seeing the next James Bond film this December, I cannot say that I will beseeing the next Austin Powers one.

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