It’s been 10 years since Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones donned the black suits and sunglasses but the duo have finally returned for the third installment of the Men in Black franchise. Once again they must save the world from alien destruction, this time at the hands of the recently imprisoned Boris the Animal (Jemaine Clement). Things become more complicated when Boris gets his hand on a time travel device and goes into the past to kill Agent K, therefore preventing himself from ever going to prison in the first place. Now it’s up to Agent J to fix everything that has been undone and restore the timeline, thus saving the world.
Director Barry Sonnenfeld once again returns to the helm for Men in Black 3 after the 10 year hiatus. The MIB franchise has always been about alien invasions threating the destruction of the earth and the universe, along with fancy futuristic weapons and technology, and the threequel is no different. Even after all these years Will Smith is still the same old cocky agent, while Tommy Lee Jones performs his job with somber diligence. Things change when J travels back in time to 1969 in order to stop Boris the Animal from killing K. There, we meet a young K, played by Josh Brolin.
Josh Brolin delivers the best performance of the film and is quite convincing as a young Tommy Lee Jones. His mannerisms and expressions are just about the same, except he is a little more spirited. No doubt being 40 years younger helps in that aspect. MIB3’s portrayal of a 1969 New York City is often times humorous with “futuristic” technology comprising of gigantic cell phones and a neutralizer that is attached to the hip. One scene in particular involves Will Smith being pulled over by the police which, in 1969, was probably a frequent occurrence as racial tensions were at an all-time high. Thankfully, the film manages to put a humorous spin on the whole time jump.
While the acting is on par with the rest of the MIB films and the portrayal of a 1969 New York is quite comical, the story could have used a bit more work. Whereas previous films in the series always featured interesting aliens and technology, MIB3 simply doesn’t have that same bewilderment. Boris is the most interesting creature, but we don’t get to see his true self until the very end. Even then it’s only for a split second. In essence, the story is forgettable. At this point, the Men in Black franchise is just going through the motions. There’s an alien invasion threatening the world and it’s up to Agents J and K to save the day. Oh, and rockets are always involved in one way or another.
If you’re a fan of the series, then Men in Black 3 delivers exactly what you would expect. It’s an entertaining sci-fi film that has some humorous moments along with some alien exploding action (the 3D isn’t so bad, either), but if you’re looking for something more, look elsewhere.
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