Film Review: Johnny English Reborn

Johnny English Reborn is a nice movie. Easy on the eye. Rowan Atkinson is the main attraction here. His secret agent is more Clouseau than Bond. I would change the advert slogan, ‘Licensed to make you laugh’ to ‘Licensed to amuse’. Rowan is amusing but I never laughed out loud once.

Gillian Anderson wasn’t great. Her English accent along with her portrayal was flat. There was no oomph to her character. Even when she was in peril, it was all rather stiff lipped (Perhaps played with intent) but it was not engaging. I expected a lot from her and she fell considerably short! She was equally drab when English was picking on her mother.

Dominic West was better as the ‘typical Bond spy’ Ambrose. The new kid, played by Daniel Kaluuya, reminded me more of Inspector Gadget’s niece Penny, in that he covered for his boss and was smarter.

Kate Sumner played by Rosamund Pike (Die Another Day) was passable but lacked passion. She played the counsellor of the bureau. Also the baddie who fancies her, knew she was helping English but let her go and then put an assassin on English, in the counsellor’s own bedroom??? Why not kill them both???

But still there were moments of comic genius. The golf club was the best, the use of a helicopter has never been so funny. Also the hit man, is actually a ‘hit granny’, a crafty old girl with several disguises so English gets her mixed up with someone else with more hilarious results. Her last one is the best.

Mistaking a youthful Prime Minister as a fibber was very funny, ‘I’m the Prime Minister.’ ‘You wish.’ Brilliant. Losing his boss’ cat was genius but the execution lacked enthusiasm. The toilet scene in the men’s toilet was a chuckle fest.

The car, Tim McInnerny’s spoof of Q and gadgets were not used enough. There were some clever toys.

Unfortunately there wasn’t enough moments to satisfy, as if the writers developed a block about what to do in between the comic episodes. There was a roughness to the script as if was being done on the go.

The Tibetan monk beginning was completely unnecessary and filled with nonsense. Nothing to do with the film or espionage at all. I didn’t see the point of seeing him on ‘holiday’ first. I would’ve preferred a shorter overview.

I think there should have been more ‘Naked Gun’ moments, where English is causing more havoc. It seemed a bit tame. As if the producer was frightened of being sued or something. The mind control drug was under used and so much humour was missed.

I would watch it again on TV or rent the DVD. Not buy it though. It wasn’t amazing but a good film with some highlights worth remembering. 6/10 from me.

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About Erzi Paris

Erzi Paris lives in London and loves writing, going to the theatre and watching films. Always abreast of celebrity news, his biggest hope is to be a reporter. He likes keep-fit too. His favourite authors are Michael Crichton, JK Rowling, Suzanne Collins and Rosalind Miles.
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