Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery – frozen in the swinging 60s, and thawed out in the 90s Austin “Danger” Powers has to defeat his nemesis Dr Evil while re-adjusting to modern life. Depressing fact: this film is almost 20 years old. Uplifting fact: it’s still as funny as you remember. Mike Meyers’ style isn’t for everyone, but this is about as mainstream as he goes; and the more James Bond knowledge you can bring to the table, the better (dispatch one-liners, henchmen deaths, sets, character names, elaborate death traps…). The clever setup means there’s a lot of rope to be used here: the spy genre, action movies, and fish-out-of-water elements, all fully capitalised. There’s quite a narrow band of humour used here: namely slapstick, funny faces, silly dances, and physical jokes – nothing too high-brow, but it’s all to the highest standard. If there’s one weakness it’s that the movie as a whole is a little too reliant on skits and unrelated interludes. With my James Bond obsession and nostalgic hat on, I’m probably not the most objective person to be watching this, but I would have genuine questions if someone didn’t enjoy such a light, charming, and loving parody of the early Bond Movies. Almost twenty years old, but still a stone-cold comedy classic, the first Austin Powers film is 95 minutes of laugh-out-loud, wall-to-wall top-drawer comedy.
If you can watch this clip without laughing (or even smiling) call a doctor – because you’re dead inside.
Dear Mr Watterson – An Exploration of Calvin and Hobbes: a Calvin and Hobbes enthusiast tries to figure out what makes the comic so enduring. To boil this down; it’s 60 minutes of fans absolutely gushing over Calvin and Hobbes and 30 minutes of people debating whether or not the refusal to licence merchandise was a bad idea. That’s about it. For a Doc on such an abundant and much-loved subject there’s a couple of major flaws: firstly, for being about a living person’s greatest work, the fact that there’s nothing but old quotes from Watterson is crushingly disappointing. One of the main players is a guy who’s written a book about Watterson, and that’s as close as we’re getting here. Secondly, this is a strip that everyone loves, so to hear one person nostalgically navel-gaze and deliberate over his memories and favourite strips totally undercuts the movie. On the plus side, if you read, re-read, and re-re-read the books as a kid, there’s a lot of loving footage of the best and brightest cartoons – and some close-ups of original strips. Even when rapidly flipping through “The Complete Calvin and Hobbes” volumes you can pick out all of your favourites. Stylistically, if you imagine a Kickstarter-funded indie documentary… yup… you’ve got it! Cutesy, offensively inoffensive indie music, and blurry-as-shit visuals. As someone who grew up with their dad’s hand-me-down books listed below (and even knifed a couple to create a comic strip border for my bedroom) there’s absolutely nothing new to be found in here, a cynic may even say it’s leeching off of a popular franchise. May be of more interest to C&H newcomers – if there are any out there.
WARNING: Contains traces of interesting content. Made and packaged in a Bill Watterson free environment.
LOOK AT MY CRAZY WIDE APERTURE!!!
- Calvin and Hobbes
- Something Under the Bed Is Drooling
- Yukon Ho!
- Weirdos from Another Planet!
- The Revenge of the Baby-Sat
- Scientific Progress Goes “Boink”
- Attack of the Deranged Mutant Killer Monster Snow Goons
- The Days Are Just Packed
- Homicidal Psycho Jungle Cat
- There’s Treasure Everywhere