|SPY (director/writer: Paul Feig; cinematographer: Robert Yeoman; editors: Brent White/Melissa Bretherton; music: Theodore Shapiro; cast: Melissa McCarthy (Susan Cooper), Jude Law (Bradley Fine), Jason Statham (Rick Ford), Rose Byrne (Rayna Boyanov), Raad Rawi (Boyanov), Miranda Hart (Nancy), Bobby Cannavale (Sergio de Luca), Allison Janney (Elaine Crocker), Peter Serafinowicz (Aldo), Morena Baccarin (Karen Walker), Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson (Himself), Richard Brake (Solsa Dudaev); Runtime: 117; MPAA Rating: R; producers: Paul. Feig/Peter Chernin/Jenno Topping/Jessie Henderson; 20th Century Fox; 2015)|
|"A funny spoof of the James
Bond spy films."
by Dennis Schwartz
funny spoof of the James Bond spy films. It adds
loads of zingers to the action genre, as it blends
together comedy and action. Writer-director Paul
Heat"/"I Am David") customizes the film
for the likable Melissa McCarthy's
comedy routine of being a loser who gains confidence
as things move along and morphs from a sad sack to a
hero. Ms. McCarthy is in full-glory in this starring
role, her best movie role yet.
Cooper (Melissa McCarthy) is a
long-time unassuming desk-bound CIA analyst, who
joyfully works in a rodent-infested office and
thrills at supporting suave super-spy CIA agent Bradley Fine (Jude
Law), her secret love, from her desk while he
operates in the dangerous field. Bradley, of course,
receives all the credit while she remains the unsung
hero. When Bradley is supposedly killed trying to
recover a nuclear weapon from a Bulgarian
nuclear-arms dealer, her boss, the no-nonsense
bossy deputy director of the CIA, Elaine Crocker
(Allison Janney), reluctantly assigns the desk-only
agent to the field because a double-agent mole gave
away the names of all the field agents and only
Susan is still unknown to the enemy. Bradley
accidentally killed the Bulgarian baddie
Boyanov (Raad Rawi), the
father of Rayna (Rose Byrne), the sadistic
spoiled-brat daughter. Since she's now the only one
who knows where dad hid the nuke, the agency makes
her their number one priority. It's up to Susan to
track her down before the bomb can be delivered to
terrorists for a possible global disaster. The
compromised macho agent Rick Ford (Jason Statham)
quits when not assigned to go after Rose and after a
hissy fit goes rogue trying to get to Rose before
she sells the nuke.
The action leaves
Bulgaria for Paris, Rome and Budapest, and climaxes
at Lake Balaton.
Susan, in different disguises and aliases, goes
globe-trotting around the world in pursuit of the
baddies. She's initially helped on the desk by her
clumsy nervous best friend analyst colleague Nancy (Miranda Hart),
a tall and slim Brit version of Susan, until Nancy
joins her in the field. An amped-up Rick, boasting
about being immune to death, keeps showing up to
help, but in most cases it's Susan who helps him. In
Rome there's some
occasional field help from the lecherous Italian
agent Aldo (Peter Serafinowicz), a lovable groper.
soon learn the buyer of the nuke is the Al
Qaeda-connected materialistic terrorist Sergio De Luca
(Bobby Cannavale). While tracking the slippery
ruthless thug down there are a few twists, more
silliness and plenty of fat-lady jokes, profanity and
crude humor, before Susan takes the action up a notch
to even top 007.
Enough of the zingers hit the mark to keep things amusing, and Ms. McCarthy, who might always play the same role, nevertheless shows that when the material, the directing and supporting cast are good, her films have a certain winsome sparkle that appeal to the masses. The pic also makes some serious valid points about how women are treated by Hollywood as action heroes. Though I must say the film was overlong for such a raunchy farcical comedy and it would have benefited from some pruning.
REVIEWED ON 6/5/2015 GRADE: B
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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