Mike Myers has the best chemistry with himself. This carries through the Austin Powers trilogy, where in each film he plays more versions of himself than before.
NOTE: All Classic Movie Reviews have spoilers.
The Spy Who Shagged Me used to be my favorite Austin Powers film, but now it’s kind of offensive
Unfortunately, The Spy Who Shagged Me doesn’t hold up as well as its predecessor: International Man of Mystery. Some gags just aren’t funny anymore.
The Fat Bastard character is especially off-putting. We don’t need to vilify heavy people these days to mine humor, and shouldn’t. And eating babies wasn’t actually ever funny. Forcing Shagwell to have anal sex with an a huge stranger who eats tubbed chicken in bed while smearing food on himself for the LOLS is just….no. What else does this character do? Fart, and leave nuclear turds in the toilet. Because overweight people do gross things?
Felicity Shagwell fares little better. Her whole punchline is that Austin’s OMG met a woman as horny as he. HA HA. He turns her down due to *reasons* and now she is sad. There’s a whole music montage where she feels unworthy because he won’t bang her. Then we see her shopping for clothes in her sad face, instead of kicking ass as the secret agent the movie insists she is.
In the age of #MeToo, this all falls flat. I doubt Natasha Romanov in the upcoming Black Widow movie will have any such scenes.
The rest of the jokes center around Austin drinking hot poop, and people with Dwarfism.
The Funny Stuff
What it makes up for over the original film is actual world building: Scott Evil, Mini-Me, The Evil Family concerts, a better lair, and the back-in-time Rob Lowe version of Number 2. The ‘nude’ musical title sequence is the best in the trilogy.
I also enjoyed the reprise of the silly shadow gags, and the clever, recurring word play about that huge flying…Johnson.
From a flick I would have awarded an A- back in the 90s, The Spy Who Shagged Me no longer stands up in 2020. It gets an entire letter drop, staying just above the C range because the villains take over the main plot. Team Evil is funnier and more interesting than Austin, Felicity, and Basil. (Although Basil Exposition is still a brilliant name for the Q character.) It’s unusual that the bad guys are the better part of a story.
Unless Dwarf jokes offend you, in which case Austin Powers is simply not your bag, baby.
Movie Grade: B-
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Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)