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     " Oh, look! Mini Me is now a Mini Austin. Isn't that clever? "

      Title: Austin Powers in Goldmember by New Line Cinema

      Format: Major Motion Picture

      Reviewing Monkey: Dungapult

      The Hype: Occasionally billed as a trilogy, Goldmember is the third (but we're not sure last) movie in the Austin Power's series. Join Mike Myers as he again becomes the crooked toothed Brit with a flare for the inane and battles several nemeses from the '70s.

      What This Monkey Thought...

      Story and Acting: It's always hard to judge acting on a movie like this since, truthfully, no acting is really required. The two closest things to real performances are the myriad of characters Myers parades past us (Powers, Dr. Evil, Fat Bastard, Goldmember) and Beyonce Knowles performance as the 1970's diva Foxxy Cleopatra. And while Knowles is very believable and likely off to a fine acting start, Myers' characters end up being little more than costumes and accents- generally completely indistinguishable from each other in mannerisms and dialogue.
          And that, at heart, really becomes the main and unfortunately negative theme to Goldmember- same people, same things, and same act. While the first Austin Powers movie was wonderful in its off the wall humor and the garish portrayal of Austin against a modern society, Goldmember ends up being little more than hackneyed jokes slapped one after another in a completely non-sequential order on film. The movie literally reads; fart joke, dressing Mini Me up in a different outfit, fat joke, short joke, genitalia joke, pause, fart joke. There's no wit, no rhyme, no reason, and inevitably- no real humor in any of it. Worse yet is the fact that ¾ of the jokes aren't even original…they're just re-hashes of bits from earlier movies (Oh, look! Mini Me is now a Mini Austin. Isn't that clever?). And, as if that wasn't enough, Myers has completely lost track of his characters and his own acting as the same dialogue, the same jokes, the same mannerisms, the same everything spill from one to the next.
          So, combine that with a story that is completely non-sensical and entirely contrived and you end up with a big, fat 1 out of 5.

      Action: Another great loss in Goldmember is the complete lack of action (comic or otherwise). They are so concerned with stretching out joke after mediocre joke that they forgot to actually bother to "spoof" the spy genre. The only exception is a couple of well-placed "Judo Chops" and an interesting, if only 3 seconds long fight between Austin and Fat Bastard. What a waste. 2 out of 5

      Visuals and Directing: One of the problems of stardom is that people stop keeping you in check. I say that since, obviously, no one bothered to tell Myers that he may not have a great idea this time and that revisions should have been made. And though, in general, the direction isn't bad- often times shots that blatantly don't work and visual gags that need a whole lot of work are set up in the interest of just slamming as many bits at us as possible. 3 out of 5

      Sound Track: The trademark Austin Powers dance numbers are back, which is a great thing as far as I'm concerned. They're cheeky, they're silly, and they tend to be funny. Or at least they used to be. This time, Austin enters a new theme for the dance numbers, "Hey, who's popular?" Best defined by the Britney Spears vs. Austin Powers dance off, Goldmember may be an apex of "Screw the movie, let's do an MTV soundtrack." Contrived, painful, and an insult to our collective intelligence- I am completely sick of movies that have flavor of the month soundtracks. And, though it's a bit out of place in this category, on that note let me rant for just a second about what Hollywood calls "Product Placement". This is the immoral act of "finding" opportunities to parade corporate logos across our noses throughout the movie- and Goldmember is among the worst I've ever seen. Did you know that Britney Spears is Pepsi's spokeswoman? If you didn't now, you sure as hell will after this flick. And, what about that obscure bit of legalese that says visitors to prison inmates can bring value meals from Taco Bell, set them on the table directly in front of the camera, and then pretend like we aren't supposed to notice how totally sad the advertising has gotten. I'll tell ya, it's unbelievably bad. 1 out of 5

      Value vs. Admission: On the plus side, I'll tell you that the first 3 minutes were absolutely frickin' hilarious. I laughed hard, I laughed a lot, and I laughed solidly. That's good. After that, I smiled (not laughed, not chuckled, but merely smiled) twice. That's it. End of story. In 90 minutes my mouth turned up but a mere two times. Although, in the movies defense, I probably would have actually laughed at both of those scenes if I hadn't seen them 15,000 times in the commercials that have been running day and night for the last 8 weeks. 2 out of 5

      The Verdict:

       There used to be a golden rule in Hollywood: "If you don't have anything new to say, don't say anything." Unfortunately that golden rule was evidently smelted to add more bad glitter make up to Goldmember's face. Composed of nothing but recycled, out of sequence, and completely uninspired humor- Goldmember delivered little more than a reason never to trust sequels.

      The Good: The first 3 minutes.

      The Bad: The entire movie after that.

      The Overall Ugly: Forced, witless, and completely rehashed- this movie sucks donkeys.

      What it's Worth: I wouldn't even bother to see it matinee.

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