Johnny English Reborn
Did you know?

This franchise is known for spoofing spy films, chief among them, the Bond films. Rosamund Pike, who costars in the film, played a Bond girl in Die Another Day.

Rowan Atkinson is mostly known for his role as the comical and often silent Mr. Bean. However, he has a lesser known persona, Johnny English; a secret agent in Britain’s MI7, although not a very good one.  He’s basically a spoof on all spy movies, specifically James Bond. It’s been nearly eight years since Johnny English graced the big screen but he’s finally back in Johnny English Reborn. Can this clumsy secret agent redeem himself from his last folly, or is he up to the same old tricks?

After failing a disastrous mission in Mozambique, Johnny English retired from MI7. It’s now five years later, and a new mission has arrived, one that only English can complete. His mission, should he choose to accept it, is to find out who’s a part of a secret organization called Vortex, and foil their plan to kill the Chinese Premier before it’s too late.

Johnny English Reborn is your stereotypical spoof movie with Mr. Bean type humor. Most of the laughs revolve around Atkinson doing something stupid or getting caught up in some ridiculous situation. Honestly, they’re not that funny. Johnny English’s stupidity only makes him look like a sad figure who you want to put out of his misery rather than some loveable buffoon. It’s amazing he’s lasted this long as a secret agent without getting a bullet to the head.

What the film does manage to do well is its references to James Bond and other films. What spy film wouldn’t be complete without a handful of cool gadgets and an Aston Martin? Nowadays, there also has to be a rooftop parkour scene, and Reborn manages to handle it perfectly. Another reference done well is the Rush Hour franchise. English’s new partner aptly named Tucker is clearly a dead ringer for Chris Tucker. Still, it’s difficult to put it past the films multiple flaws.

Just like its predecessor, Johnny English Reborn feels like a film out of the past. Many of the jokes are dated, and simply don’t have the same laughter effect Atkinson’s humor had years ago. Times have changed and so had the definition of comedy. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said of Johnny English as his style of comedy has ultimately fallen flat.

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Matt Rodriguez
Review by Matt Rodriguez
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