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Laramie Movie Scope:
Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery

A funny send up of James Bond and the 1960s

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by Robert Roten, Film Critic
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May 11, 1997 -- "Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery" is a funny spy-film spoof right out of the 1960s. It hearkens back to films such as "In Like Flint," and to television shows like "Get Smart."

The James Bond-like hero, Austin Powers (Mike Meyers) is frozen in the 1960s, along with the arch villain, Dr. Evil (also played by Myers, who wrote the script). When Dr. Evil re-surfaces, Powers is thawed out to stop him.

The film is a lot more clever than it looks like in the trailer. There are a lot of funny gags in the movie, like the scene with Powers and fellow agent Vanessa Kensington (Elizabeth Hurley) on a sort of love bus in Las Vegas being serenaded by Burt Bacharach. There are some funny takeoffs on Bond-like names, such as Lotta Fagina (a takeoff on Pussy Galore).

There is also a funny subplot concerning Dr. Evil and his inability to relate to either his 1990's son or to a world where mere money is more important than power. Somehow, Dr. Evil's dreams of world conquest seem more noble than the corporate greed of his top henchman, Number Two (Robert Wagner).

There are many funny jokes arising from the clash between 1967 values in 1997. Myers is funny in both roles, but the supporting cast of characters in the film is a little weak. Some of the jokes are lame and others miss the target, but that's par for the course in this kind of all-out comedy.

Others in the film include, Tom Arnold as a cowboy tourist, Carrie Fisher as a psychiatrist and Rob Lowe and Christian Slater have bit roles as well. Overall, the film is a lot of fun and there are plenty of laughs. It rates a B.

Click here for links to places to buy this movie in video and/or DVD format, the soundtrack, books, even used videos, games and lots of other stuff. I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.

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Copyright © 1997 Robert Roten. All rights reserved.
Reproduced with the permission of the copyright holder.
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Robert Roten can be reached via e-mail at my last name at lariat dot org. [Mailer button: image of letter and envelope]

(If you e-mail me with a question about this or any other movie or review, please mention the name of the movie you are asking the question about, otherwise I may have no way of knowing which film you are referring to)