Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me

Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me

***1/2

Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray

Things are definitely a-changin'. Here is a 12 certificate movie, stuffed to the boxer elastics with penis jokes, about a goofy drip in Carnaby velvets who cannot get it up anymore because a kilted flab-u-like, called Fat Bastard, has stolen his mojo (libido) when he was frozen in a block of ice.

The prototype Austin was a James Bond parody, with Mike Myers playing 003-and-a-half like Bugs Bunny, and Elizabeth Hurley giving a sexy rendition of Emma Peel from the The Avengers (TV version).

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AP2 is better. Familiarity encourages critical amnesia. Like a pointless catch phrase, you learn to appreciate its numbing qualities. All the old faces are back -- Robert Wagner, Michael York, Burt Bacharach (with Elvis Costello) and Liz Hurley in a genuinely funny pre-credits cameo.

The story of Dr Evil's return from wherever he was banished (outer space, or Outer Mongolia) is hardly the issue. He has a midget clone, called Mini-Me (nice non-PC touch), who mimes his pinky suck to perfection and is not averse to beating up overdressed wimps four times his size.

Austin has a new sidekickette (the delectable Heather Graham), who is dubbed "very shagadelic". She doesn't hang around waiting for the phone to ring. She kicks donkey. Myers, as Austin, uses "baby" in every sentence and smiles all the time. Dr Evil (Myers) is more in touch with Nineties cool (shaved head, negative attitude) and Fat Bastard (Myers) does The Nutty Professor gross out, only with a Scots accent.

James Bond has been ditched in favour of anyone you want - he is David Hemmings from Blow-Up at one point - while the central theme remains south of the belt buckle. To do the business, shagwise, he needs his mojo back and that's with Dr E on the moon. Problemo? No way, baby.

Reviewed on: 06 Feb 2002
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The shagadelic sleuth retrieves his stolen sexual appetite from Dr Evil.
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Director: Jay Roach

Writer: Mike Myers & Michael McCullers

Starring: Mike Myers, Heather Graham, Michael York, Robert Wagner, Rob Lowe, Seth Green, Mindy Sterling, Verne Troyer, Elizabeth Hurley, Gia Carides, Oliver Muirhead

Year: 1999

Runtime: 104 minutes

BBFC: 12 - Age Restricted

Country: US

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