Now that I have a grounding in James Bond tropes, I watched the “Austin Powers” trilogy (1997-2002), a tour de force of performances by Mike Myers with jokes that connect about half the time. At first blush, the timing for these films is 10 to 20 years too late, since they make fun of the classic “Bond” clichés at a time when people were loving the hip updates of the Pierce Brosnan films. But at least the first entry, “Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery” (1997), achieves timelessness.
“Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me” – The plot of Mike Myers’ spy spoof sequel is so ridiculous that Austin Powers himself actually makes fun of it during the film. The premise – Austin goes back to 1969 England to retrieve his mojo from Dr. Evil – serves as a platform for cultural observances and Myers’s trademark improvisational acting. The result is equal parts hilarious and annoying. B-
– John Hansen, NDSU Spectrum, September 1999
I was a bit on the fence about seeing “The Campaign,” simply because it’s about a political campaign, and who wants to pay money to see more of that? But my trust in Will Ferrell and Zach Galifanakis won out, and I’m glad it did.