Black suits. Cool sunglasses. Style. This is what defines the Men in Black. Some 15 years after the original film the guys in black are back to save the planet yet again. And this time they’ve got to go back thru time in order to do it. Can this trip thru time bring back the same qualities that the original film had and be as much of a success? Only time will tell.
Barry Sonnenfeld returns for the third time to direct and once again teams up with Will Smith (Agent J) and Tommy Lee Jones (Agent K). The adventure is set around the escape of the villainous alien Boris the Animal (Jemaine Clement) from a lunar maximum prison. His goal is to take revenge out on Agent K for taking off his arm and his imprisonment. Additionally he is out for revenge against him for K protecting the Earth from annihilation from his fellow aliens. It seems as though Agent K has done quite a bit of work back in his early days as a member of the MIB. But it’s for these reasons that Boris sets out to travel back in time and kill Agent K.
As a result, Agent J must go back in time to meet up with a younger version of Agent K (Josh Brolin) and team up with him to try and kill Boris the Animal to stop his older counterpart from travelling back in time to kill Agent K. With limited knowledge about his partner’s whereabouts, the two set out to search for and stop Boris.
The highlight of this film has to be Josh Brolin himself. He has taken on the role of Agent K and has mastered the mannerisms of Tommy Lee Jones absolutely perfectly. Voice, posture, virtually everything breathes Tommy Lee Jones and the performance is nothing short of amazing. It takes a lot for another actor to come in and have the same chemistry of the actor he is portraying, but Brolin is 100% successful.
Smith and Jones are back in top form and the chemistry between the two of them is once again wonderful to see on screen. It’s nice to see in the film that the back stories to both Agent K and Agent J are explored and we get to see how Agent K becomes the way he is and essentially what each of their “origin” story is. In fact, without giving away the end scene, it is so touching it’ll probably bring a tear or two to your eyes.
The one criticism I have for the film is that it starts out a little too slow. The movie seems to know where it wants to end up, but doesn’t quite know how it wants to get there. There were rumors that during production there was a lot of “winging it” while filming the feature and it comes across on screen during the first half of the film.
The Men in Black are definitely back and the addition of Brolin makes this a movie that any MIB fan will definitely enjoy. Grab your popcorn. Get your soda. And kick back for some good ‘ole summer fun!
FINAL GRADE: B +
Reel Film News Movie Review by Bill Ayres