The black suits are back in town to save the world from the scum of the universe. This time, one agent must travel back in time to save his longtime partner from an alien who wants revenge. It’s been fifteen years since their first adventure; can they save the universe and the summer season in 3-D? Let’s review the mission dossier of Men in Black 3 as completed by Agent DR.
In an alien maximum security prison on the moon, Boris the Animal (Jermaine Clement) is serving a life sentence. Thanks to a mysterious woman, he finally escapes the prison with one thing on his mind – to kill the man who put him there and shoot his left arm off. Back on Earth, it’s business as usual for longtime MIB Agents J (Will Smith) and K (Tommy Lee Jones) as they keep us safe from the scum of the universe and making sure that earth fish is served to humans.
Meanwhile, Boris hatches a plan to eliminate Agent K, once and for all. He decides to complete the mission in the past. The next day when Agent J returns to MIB Headquarters, he’s in for a rude awakening. First, he’s assigned a new partner, Double A, who is obviously new to the team. Secondly, no one has heard of Agent K except for new MIB head, Agent O (Emma Thompson). She informs Agent J that Agent K has been dead for over forty years while on duty. All of a sudden, the Boglodites invade the Earth – destroying everything in its path. In order to make things right, J must time jump back to July 15, 1969 and save his partner, a much younger Agent K (Josh Brolin) from certain catastrophe.
MIB is back and better than ever. Director Barry Sonnenfeld has redeemed himself with the third installment. The first film introduced us to the world of MIB and its agents. Its sequel, MIB2, tries to repeat the success of the first film but lacked certain qualities to be its own. MIB3 was a breath of fresh air. The overall direction of the movie was smooth as ice with the time travel element that will make any sci-fi fan blush.
Will Smith’s performance as Agent J never ceases to amaze me for he not only had to carry the film on his shoulders but do it with the same wit and charm he had since he started the role fifteen years ago. I admired how J handled the racial profiling of the police of 1969. It goes to show that a slick agent driving a Cadillac with a neuralizer can get you out of any situation. Smith’s performance is dynamite!
Josh Brolin created a dead-on impersonation of Agent K. The much younger K was cool, daring and much more easy-going than what J was used to. Brolin brought more vibrant personality to the mysterious stoic K we known for years. The combination of Smith and Brolin creates a natural entertaining vibe to the film.
While Jones may not have big presence in MIB3, his short screen time still speaks volumes. One scene where K called up J to talk to him about a possible secret was so emotional and helps the audience remember that K is a human being after all.
A character that brought life into the movie was Griffin (Michael Stuhlbarg). Griffin is an alien who sees all possible futures. At first, I thought Griffin reminded me of a studious clairvoyant but once he grabs your attention on screen – you are hooked. Griffin is one of the most engaging and appealing aliens ever to appear on screen. Stuhlbarg has played the most unique characters in recent films and this role is no different. If there is an MIB4, I hope he’s in it.
My only issues with this MIB mission were that Jermaine Clement’s performance as Boris was only mildly sinister. For a criminal who thought of revenge nearly all his life, I would expect a more dangerous, take-no-prisoners type of revenge than this “play it safe” performance. And while I like Agent O’s presence in the film, it left me wondering what is the story between Agents O & K. It’s the classic are they or aren’t they situation. Perhaps this is one of the questions that we are afraid to get an answer.
In case you are wondering about the 3-D, three words – SAVE YOUR MONEY! Go see it in 2D.
Final analysis: MIB3 is a solid summer sequel. You have the classic buddy agent movie franchise you know and love. Smith’s and Brolin’s performances were outstanding. You have the powerful emotional moment in the end. Finally, you have a film that came full circle. That’s the power of MIB3, now go see it!
FINAL GRADE: B+