Well, I’ll watch anything with Allison Janney in it after her superb performances in West Wing and The Hours. The trailers for Spy were hilarious and, as it turns out, so was the movie once you get past the continuous barrage from characters with a limited vocabulary consisting mostly of what used to be called “foul language”.
But it’s Melissa McCarthy and Miranda Hart who absolutely steal the show. As the two CIA agents who have never been out in the field suddenly find themselves thrust into a world they have never experienced before — high society Paris, arms dealers, nuclear threat, double agents, bombs, high-speed chases, and private jets — the girls, especially, Susan Cooper (McCarthy), make split-second decisions, improvise cover stories, create diversions, and even turn traitor (temporarily) to achieve their mission.
Susan, somewhat demoralized by her dowdy cover identity, sleazy surroundings, and opposition from fellow spy Rick Ford (Jason Statham), disregards her “no contact” mission to follow suspects, enter into a high-speed chase on a motorcycle, and inveigle herself into a bodyguard position with the wealthy ‘femme fatale’ who has the nuclear weapon she plans to sell to a terrorist.
First, Cooper takes a cycle with a roof on it which promptly falls over on its side. Undeterred, she takes another on which she attempts a ramp over a traffic jam only to find herself in fresh laid cement, greatly upsetting all the workmen who had just finished laying it.
Hart’s best scene is when she creates a diversion by attacking rapper 50 Cent during his concert but she is a running comic relief throughout the movie, being supportive and protective of her friend Susan as she gets deeper and deeper into the world of espionage.
Jude Law plays Cooper’s prime agent/love interest, Bradley Fine, in the beginning but he’s quickly killed off (or so we think) and he’s pretty much a Maxwell Smart type of spy. When he says he couldn’t do the job without Cooper, he’s not kidding. Well, he might be, but he shouldn’t be.
There is a lot of violence in this movie but mostly it’s so spoofed that it’s not a serious obstacle to enjoying it. The fight in the kitchen is a prime example. Lots of laughs, some great shots of Paris and Rome, and available now in DVD and blueray on Amazon. * * *