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Overall Rating
3.6

Awesome: 17.45%
Worth A Look44.3%
Just Average: 25.5%
Pretty Crappy: 6.71%
Sucks: 6.04%

14 reviews, 65 user ratings


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Mystery Men
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by Erik Childress

"An Overlooked Gem That Deserves a Sequel"
4 stars

Mystery Men (***) – It’s not often that I actually welcome a sequel to a movie, but I look forward to and pray that this film is successful, because I want to see Mystery Men 2 as soon as possible.

Many critics have likened this ingenious concept to a six-minute skit on The Ben Stiller Show. While that may be true, it’s a concept that screams out for a full-length movie. And here’s one that both lampoons the world of superheroes while at the same time respecting it. And what inspired casting too. Ben Stiller as the thinly veiled replica of the Incredible Hulk known as Mr. Furious. The great William H. Macy as the Shoveler. Hank Azaria has a lot of fun as the silverware-wielding Blue Raja and how can you not love Janeane Garofalo as the bowler? The movie starts off strong with its opening scene and keeps on moving with Greg Kinnear doing his best Talk Soup smugging as Captain Amazing. And just when it seems to be running out of steam, we are introduced to fresh new characters – first with Paul Reubens, making a nice comeback as the Spleen, then onto Garofalo’s character, then onto one of my favorites – Wes Studi as the Sphinx, then onto fleshing out Tom Waits’ weapons designer. The film has a great look to it, truly in the grand tradition of comic books and recent comic book movies, and for about 75 minutes, it’s very funny. The last half hour or so gets a little tame on jokes, if not on action – (what does ever happen to Lena Olin as Casanova’s partner though. She actually does a better disappearing act than the Invisible Boy, never to be heard from again.) - giving us the feeling that this is a film idea just getting warmed up. But that only happens during the third act.

The first two will be enormously entertaining for those who grew up with or know anything about comic books and the movies and cartoons that followed them. Stiller shows what a gifted comedic actor he is, spewing out ad-libs with razor sharp accuracy and partner-in-crime Garofalo is right there to back him up. Invisible Boy is kind of a one joke character, but Hank Azaria brings a lot of joy to his role as the Blue Raja. Macy is the father figure here and he’s welcome to the challenge. While Mystery Men could have been better in spots, I still can’t wait for the sequel. (Note: Johnny B fans will be happy to hear Janeane Garofalo’s explanation of how she says Sabotage.)

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=1329&reviewer=198
originally posted: 02/15/00 17:00:41
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User Comments

12/14/13 Mister Jimmy The super-hero auditions scene had me laffin my ass off! 5 stars
1/28/09 Nori This was one of those super corney awful movies that you absolutely loved. I enjoyed it. 5 stars
11/21/08 Shaun Wallner Great Film! 4 stars
9/14/08 nastyrabbit There's never been an ensemble cast with this kind of chemistry before....it's PERFECT! 5 stars
12/06/07 Adrian BUT I AM SCARED OF THE SUZIES! 5 stars
4/15/07 Ne44FaSt Funny when they accidently psychofraculate Capt. Amazing 5 stars
7/28/06 David Cohen Speaks to the inner hero in all of us 4 stars
1/22/06 Indrid Cold I had heard that this is a lot funnier than you'd expect. It's true. 4 stars
5/02/05 dwarzel There are heroes/villains in the Marvel universe with MUCH lamer gimmicks than these. 4 stars
1/24/05 Jeff Anderson MY KIND OF UNIQUE SUPER HERO FILM! A great double feature with THE SPECIALS with Rob Lowe. 5 stars
9/04/04 DM Silly but perfect for your inner 10-year old 4 stars
6/07/04 Elen Sly and witty, and fun for comic book geeks and non-geeks alike. 5 stars
1/07/04 Phil M. Aficionado Bizarre. A gas. Great casting. Must have cost a FORTUNE to make 4 stars
4/12/03 Jack Sommersby Forced and uncouth nonsense. Stiller's panache is film's only asset. 1 stars
7/19/02 Bastard Child of Mother Teresa Pretty darn good! Fry in heck, gay man! 4 stars
5/15/02 Gerox Hooha! Janeane ownz me. 4 stars
11/02/01 Andrew Carden A Few Very Funny Scenes Are Overblowed With Special Effects. Stiller Looks Terrible. 3 stars
10/03/01 Monday Morning Do the HBS reviewers get paid to write all that or do they just have time to burn? 5 stars
10/03/01 Butterbean Stiller is corny, like always, but this movie put a smile on my face 3 stars
8/15/01 Dakamus Janeane Garafalo = Sexiest woman alive. 5 stars
8/07/01 Kasey Anderson I had to keep watching it over & over. WOW! 5 stars
3/02/01 dave funnier than I expected. Loved Jeanene. 5 stars
1/28/01 Jared Barber The best movie ever. Funny, and creative. 5 stars
4/19/00 Sergio Allen It really really Sucked I wanted my money back I almost walked out thats how much it sucked 1 stars
4/06/00 SID Why do they have superpowers at the end? Doesn't that contradict the whole movie? 4 stars
3/31/00 Mr Happy This movie was horrible shit. Not funny unless you from Newyork. 1 stars
3/28/00 Pat Spline is so funny 5 stars
3/07/00 David Rogers Pretty funny but it could have been better. 4 stars
3/05/00 Kyle Broflovski Gut-busting hilarious, with shades of The Thing in one particular scene...:-) 5 stars
2/08/00 Joel Harwood CLARE FORLANI IS Hot so 5 stars for her but the movie sux big time 2 stars
1/29/00 Steve Total unadulterated boring crap 1 stars
1/26/00 Katherine Hughes Humerous and enjoyable 4 stars
1/22/00 Kevin Cho At least 100 to the 10th power better than I thought it would be. U catch PW Herms in it?! 5 stars
1/22/00 Quintas Brilliant, hilarious, see it. 5 stars
10/14/99 Sara Phillips 5 stars
10/08/99 Theresa Wonderful, Hilarious! Among the best were Azaria, Macy, Garofolo, and Stiller 5 stars
9/26/99 Weird Andy Like sex with an ex-girlfriend,fun at the time, but ultimately a cheapening experience. 3 stars
9/13/99 Ratso Good job, they took a great cast and idea and made a piece of shit! 1 stars
9/03/99 Andel Crodo A disappointment if you expect a superhero movie, but a thrill if you expect a goof on them 4 stars
9/01/99 PhilmPhreak It was pretty cool - check it out 4 stars
8/26/99 Ah Dooey Okay for this type of movie. The characters were funny. 3 stars
8/21/99 Daelic I laughed. I groaned. Not great, but it was good fun. 4 stars
8/18/99 Admiral Crunch hey, at least it kicked Power Rangers in the butt 3 stars
8/18/99 Nessus Not as good as the old Tick comics, but pretty funny in spots. 4 stars
8/18/99 Geoff Unique. Watchable. Fun. A decent escape for 2 hours. 4 stars
8/17/99 KK I fell asleep halfway into it. Not even worth the price of a rental. 1 stars
8/16/99 Obi Wan Movie sucked! All funny scenes can be seen on the trailer! 2 stars
8/15/99 Temper One of the most halarious and wicked movies that I've seen in a few years! 5 stars
8/14/99 Mark Levin Hilarious send-up of formulaic comic-book superhero genre. 5 stars
8/14/99 Cage Against The Machine I was definately disappointed. 2 stars
8/13/99 jen Can't remember the last time I thought about walking out before the end credits... 1 stars
8/13/99 Mike Snell Laughed my ass off 4 stars
8/13/99 Roman has its moments 3 stars
8/12/99 PurityJustBegs this film is saturated with wonderful potential, but that is lost in time-weary cliches 3 stars
8/11/99 Michael Hodgman This movie is frickin great 5 stars
8/11/99 Cherry Very funny movie! 5 stars
8/10/99 kirk uhhh something to do for fun 3 stars
8/10/99 Michael Grimm if you like campy humor this movie is for you 4 stars
8/10/99 jenn "Blu Smrf" what a great movie, that is fun for both adults and kids alike 5 stars
8/10/99 Jo Jo, The Idiot Circus Boy The only thing that kept me from falling asleep was trying to imagine Garofalo nekked. 1 stars
8/10/99 Laz lighten up folks.this is a fun,hip ride.much better than expected. 5 stars
8/10/99 jvt Stiller was the only worthwhile character, a huge let down 2 stars
8/09/99 elfpunkt Paul Ruebens getting leghumped by a skunk was funny. The movie was not. 1 stars
8/09/99 Z it's funny, laugh! 5 stars
7/27/99 David Gilmour Reminiscent of the first two Batman movies and Bukaroo Bonzai. 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  06-Aug-1999 (PG-13)

UK
  N/A

Australia
  13-Jan-2000 (PG)




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