Johnny English Reborn

I didn’t see the first Johnny English movie in 2003, so I have no basis for comparison. But I think I can safely say if you liked that one, you’ll probably like the sequel as well. It is, what I like to call, harmlessly stupid entertainment. As you can probably tell from the movie poster, the Johnny English “franchise” is a spoof on the spy genre (especially the iconic James Bond films) so it’s laden with gadgets, gals and gallantry – all gone shamelessly awry.

British actor/comedian Rowan Atkinson reprises his role as Johnny English, Britain’s most confident, yet unintelligent spy. He’s been off the grid for a while, seeking inner peace, wisdom, redemption and stuff from a group of Tibetan monks after a failed mission in Madagascar. For some reason (that isn’t quite clear), English is summoned back to active duty with His Majesty’s Secret Service to help avert a global crisis.

In a fun little bit of stunt casting, Gillian Anderson (X-Files) plays it comically straight as Johnny’s boss at the agency.

She gives him the authority and resources (including a junior spy/intern) to track down an international group of assassins before they can carry out a deadly plot against the Premier of China. Comedic mayhem ensues.

This movie is kinda dumb. But if you’re looking for a harmlessly crude (PG) comedy to take the kids to (especially the teenage boys), then Johnny English Reborn does fit the bill. I didn’t love it. I wouldn’t even say I liked it. But I didn’t hate it – even though it could easily be subtitled, “Balls of Steel”. Let’s just leave it at that, shall we?

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