Five minutes into the new action-comedy I Spy, audiences will think they have wondered into a James Bond movie gone retarded.
Fortunately, the duo of Eddie Murphy and Owen Wilson proves to be just funny enough to make the movie entertaining.
The remake of a 1960s television series, I Spy features Alex Scott (Wilson), a secret agent held back by his own clumsiness. Alex works hard, but always seems to blunder his missions.
An opportunity to shine presents itself when the Switchblade, an invisible spy plane, falls into the hands of the "evil doers." Alex is assigned to Hungary, where the plane is presumed to be held by world villain Gundars (Malcolm McDowell).
Alex is paired with civilian Kelly Robinson (Murphy), a world-champion boxer asked to help. Kelly is boastful and obnoxious, but proves to be helpful as the two seek out the stolen jet.
The saving grace for this film is Murphy. He has the same loud, in-your-face comedy characteristic of his earlier films. It doesn't seem to matter what he says, audiences will be drawn in by his persona, especially in this role.
Wilson on the other hand, seems transparent as the main character in the story. He is amusing at times, but Murphy drives everything entertaining.
The story for the movie would make Shakespeare cry. While there is action and even an attempt at romance, no foundation is laid for basically the whole movie.
The plot almost seems to hinder the comedy of Murphy and Wilson. It distracts audiences from the their charisma and is just boring at times.
One small plus for the film is its special effects. All spy movies seem to have their fair share of gadgets, and I Spy continues the trend. Nothing will blow audiences away, but details always help presentation.
The combo of Murphy and Wilson is a major plus, but too many moments in the film are pointless and wasted. More attention should have been placed on the two as opposed to feeding time into a flimsy storyline.
Rating: C-