"I take orders from the Octoboss."

Men in Black

Anybody seen this movie. its probaly pretty old but – I just got out so I haven’t seen that many movies, but i just saw men in black at a girl’s house and it wasn’t that bad. personally i thought it was pretty stupid but there was some funny shit at times. she liked it i think i will ask her if i see her again (probly well, wink).

a couple a comments – number one, the black guy is okay i guess, but i don’t think he would last long inside. number two, i guess it was pretty funny at times. the woman, whatserfuck, she looked pretty good.

Men in Blacksorry if this has already been cover – first timer here



This entry was posted on Monday, August 30th, 1999 at 6:14 pm and is filed under Comedy/Laffs, Comic strips/Super heroes, Reviews, Science Fiction and Space Shit. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

84 Responses to “Men in Black”

  1. wow, is this Vern’s first review?

  2. you gotta start somewhere.

  3. whatsherfuck did look pretty good.

    Hoping this article will remain the only MIB coverage Vern ever does.

    Quote whore Shawn Edwards now has his trademark bubbly drivel plastered on the MIB3 previews, so you should all have every reason now to join me in my burning hatred of this summer’s cash grab sequel. I’m unreasonably angry about everything this stupid series represents — the shitty theme songs, the fast food tie-ins, the bland sub-sitcom humor, and especially the use of Shawn fucking Edwards in the previews. I want America to be less stupid, and I want the new MIB to fail.

  4. As I said before, I’ll be honest, I did laugh at that trailer scene of Will Smith threatening to kick Andy Warhol’s ass. But yeah Mouth, everything else you said is spot on and why I can’t give a shit about it. I’m actually less interested in it than I am BATTLESHIP. (I enjoyed the first movie, but MIB2 was a waste of time in spite of Dawson.)

    But Mouth, this is a battle you know you’ll lose and most likely become a hostage for some shitty low budget insurgent group and their YouTube videos making you denounce America and THE AVENGERS. And BEAUTY & THE BEAST. MIB 3 will make a gazillion bucks next weekend (actual $80+ million) the movie to finally dethrone Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, and….

    Wait wait. Have any pre-release reviews actually come out yet for MIB3? I wouldn’t mind it if it was decent, but that’s hoping for too much isn’t it?

    Bright side: Wes Anderson’s MOONRISE KINGDOM is also out limited release that same weekend. He’s dependably decent.

    But the week afterwards: SNOW WHITE & THE HUNTSMAN (starring Thor and that constipated-looking TWILIGHT chick) and PIRANHA 3DD.

    Guess which one I’m seeing.

  5. I’m sure that some of the people who will pay to see MIB 3 also voluntarily receive lashes on their back. There was NOTHING funny in the trailer for that movie. At all. Will Smith needs to stop doing sequels.

  6. I am not allowed to talk about MIB3 until Friday.

  7. I remember the first MiB had an utterly brilliant marketing campaign that succeeded in capturing my 14 year old imagination. I was disappointed when the film came out…lots of set up that you already had inferred from the trailers, making the central conflict itself seem skimpy by comparison. I was expecting something with more vastness, more gravity.

    But I’ve come around to it a bit. I would rank Vince D’s performance here highly among the many superbly portrayed wackos with which he has gifted us over the years. I never saw the sequel. Mouth’s comment seems to take for granted a collective bad-taste-in-our-mouths from the franchise, perhaps he can elaborate?

  8. You guys aren’t just a little pleased with the casting old Josh Brolin as young Tommy Lee Jones? To me it looks like he nails the hilariously stoic attitude TLJ brought to the original MIB, which I maintain remains a high point for pitch-perfect smart/dumb hollywood action comedies. Agreed, the sequel was completely disposable (thought not exactly offensive, just kinda unnecessary) but I for one am sort of holding out hope that the third will be OK. Smith has genuine charisma and can be funny when given decent material, and the combo of TLJ and Brolin as the deadpan partner has me sort of excited. Obviously, if the script is junk it won’t work, but there’s the ingredients here to make something good.

  9. The first MIB is a decent, entertaining movie. No problem there. And I don’t mean to represent a “collective” anything. These sequels, though, and the blockbuster marketing bullshit that goes with aggressively mediocre movies, really irritate me.

    I look at Barry Sonnenfeld’s resume and I see a good artist who’s sold out for dollars. As a director, he is absolutely not Striving for Excellence. This wouldn’t bother me so much except that I know this stupid fucking movie about PG-friendly aliens and Will Smith’s stupid fucking face with his stupid fucking jokes and his shitty fucking music is going to be listed at the top of my local movie theatre’s showtime listing with screenings every 15 minutes for 2 weeks and people are going to pay ridiculous amounts of money to this marketing campaign & shareholder-pleaser that looks like a tv show with a high special effects budget.

    I’m against.

  10. “The first MIB is a decent, entertaining movie. No problem there. And I don’t mean to represent a “collective” anything. These sequels, though, and the blockbuster marketing bullshit that goes with aggressively mediocre movies, really irritate me.”

    Your points are well taken.

  11. There have just been too many horror stories about that production to hold out any hope that it won’t be a complete and utter mess. The first one was a happy accident: a huge special effects comedy that somehow stayed light on its feet and retained some level of seeming spontaneity. The second one was trying to recapture lightning in a bottle and failing, in part because the whole finale concerning aliens in the World Trade Center had to be scrapped at the last second. The third one is a we’ll-fix-it-in-post cash-grab vanity project that’s trying to rerecapture lightning in a bottle ten years after they already smashed the bottle.

  12. You forgot to mention how this third one seems to be riding the mid-sixties Mad Men nostalgia train.

    Although, I have to agree with the casting of Brolin. He also did a great Bush performance, something I always secretly wished Tommy Lee Jones would have done on SNL or something.

  13. renfield – The first MIB really wanted to be the 1990s GHOSTBUSTERS and though not as good (i.e. not as AWESOME) as GHOSTBUSTERS, it kinda works in that realm. Besides the giant set-pieces and SFX and comedy, both movies had solid ideas and more or less in varying degrees executed some of the potential mined from those rocks. Plus both inspired decent cartoon programs, with THE REAL GHOSTBUSTERS one of the best well-written toons of it’s epoch.

    Hell THE REAL GHOSTBUSTERS was better than GHOSTBUSTERS 2. (But let’s not repeat that discussion. We know where we all stand on that critical debate.)

    Mr. S – yeah the casting was a fun idea and looks like it does work. Again I’m all for being wrong and getting solid entertainment at the risk of being publicly wrong AGAIN, but I’m with Mr. Majestyk. Just too many red flags, but you never know. I still can’t believe Big Jiggy actually hasn’t been in a movie in 4 years.

    Mouth – I don’t know if Sonnenfield sold out anymore than he has in the past.

    Off the top of my head, I’m trying to think of his good movies. I liked his ADDAMS FAMILY pictures (with VALUES even better), I liked MEN IN BLACK (as stated already), and GET SHORTY. Is that it? I never saw BIG TROUBLE. I saw RV (and let’s leave it at that.) Do we have to talk about that giant robot spider movie?

  14. ANoniMouse – That makes sense actually. It’s set in 1969 (“69 dudes!”) but yeah I think you might be onto something there.

    Wait 1969? Well Warhol they obviously mocked, but who else? Gee let me guess, a throwaway line about how Yoko Ono is an alien and that’s why the Beatles broke up, and all those fans in the audience will nod along. (Instead of the reality, which was a bunch of rich rock stars bitchy and suing each other over money and credit and album space. And they would’ve done this whether the Dragon Lady and her anti-music were there or not.)

  15. Or they will try to flip the joke and have he Beatles be some sort of, well, beetle.

  16. Has anybody read about the fight between Sony and theatre owners over re-embursements over the 3-D glasses for MIB 3? Sony refuses to subsizie for the glasses (as other studios do) and theatres are saying fuck you. Yet that damn movie opens this friday in 3-D.

    Who budges before friday?


    ~Paul was right about evil 3-D after all!

  17. Ah, see I haven’t been following the production on the third one. So they’re following the DTV-era Seagal “shoot a bunch of scenes and figure out what the story is later” model? Too bad, cuz ya gotta admit that the Brolin / Jones combo is a winner.

  18. ADDAMS FAMILY VALUES is better than the mediocre original in almost every way. A certified classic IMO. GET SHORTY was alright too. Can’t say I liked the original MIB though. Saw it in theaters and I felt disgusted by Will Smith’s whole schtick by the end. I was 14 so I was in the target audience that was supposed to love shit like that and not be repulsed by it.

    I liked his sitcom when it was on the air and I respect the fact that he took hip hop music to the grammy’s but that’s where it stops. I’m really not a fan and it’s mostly due in part to the combination of ID4 and MIB 2 summers in a row. Damn it man PROMETHEUS still feels so damn far away. Too much mediocre looking shit between now and then as far as the summer movies go.

  19. I will admit that Brolin is the perfect casting, but my admiration is tempered by the fact that the part only exists because the actual Tommy Lee Jones didn’t want to do the movie at all and would only agree to it if his part was shortened considerably. When half of your above-the-title cast doesn’t want to come back (and it’s not even the richer half) maybe it’s time to call it a day.

  20. Another bad omen: Will Smith didn’t even give enough of a fuck to make the theme song for the movie this time.

  21. Mr. M – I’m sure Sony had this great idea that maybe somehow they could carry on the MIB franchise with just Smith and Brolin (forget the logic rape) and let Jones go home. Wasn’t Renner’s casting in GHOST PROTOCOL supposed to potentially set up him taking over the series from Cruise? (or did I read that wrong?) I do know Hawkeye was put in the new BOURNE movie because Damon said no to the very easy paycheck.

    Broddie – Reminds me months back when photos came out of that movie Smith is making with M. Night Shymalan.

    No that’s not a typo. I’m shocked stars still want to work with him.

  22. I guess that’s the major beef Mouth and others have been complaining about: This isn’t a story that needs to be told, it’s a marketing campaign that needs a story to attach itself to. Any story.

  23. Damon didn’t do it cause he refuses to do it without Greengrass. Which is stupid cause it’s not like he has many other hit movies and Liman’s movie is really the only really good one anyway. It is a series that lends itself well to different takes from different directors every time. Like the MI series.

  24. “ADDAMS FAMILY VALUES is better than the mediocre original in almost every way.”

    Broddie – VALUES is so much better for so many reasons (Joan Cusack, the summer camp from hell) but I’ll defend the first movie (even with the lazy predictable plot) for being decent if only from the cast, their chemistry, and that series (plus the old TV show) having the remarkable ability to tell THE SAME FUCKING JOKE over and over and over again, without people noticing.

    BTW, does anybody remember that special ADDAMS FAMILY trailer which was presented by Mike Myers and Dana Carvey in their WAYNE’S WORLD characters?

    I swore I saw that, but I can’t find it on YouTube. It’s like that one time I saw RED SONJA as a kid on a local channel, but it was titled CONAN THE WARRIOR. Did that really happen or are my memories fucking with me?

  25. The Hamlet scene in the first one is better than anything in the sequel. That

  26. Mr. Majestyk – That is unfortunately the case for many movies out this summer though like BATTLESHIP (which is justly sinking in the US as it should), THE BOURNE THIS IS NOT BOURNE, THE REPETITIVE SPIDER-REMIX, TIM BURTON & JOHNNY DEPP AT THE MOVIES VOL. 45 etc.

  27. is all I have to say because I got cut off and forgot my joke.

  28. RRA – I think they did try to pass off RED SONJA as the third Conan movie in certain countries yeah.

  29. “Damon didn’t do it cause he refuses to do it without Greengrass. ”

    Like I said, he could’ve just done BOURNE 4 for the very easy paycheck but he didn’t. How many people can live with saying no to $20 million? (Well he can since he’s probably invested his money wisely, probably even Facebook, but we’re off tangent.)

    I know Universal wants to whore out one of their prized franchises, paid the Bob Ludlum estate a good fee to buy the film rights perpetuam, and feel that it’s their own 007. I don’t think it is.

    I mean those movies were a product, incidentally or subconciously or purposely a product of Dubya America. Not to mention we’ve bitched more than once that we’re tired of the Bourne-clones in storytelling and action cinematography.

    Here’s what should happen instead. Wait. Yeah wait several years, say 2016-17 (a good decade after the last one), and try to make a new BOURNE (w/ Damon back) when we’re in a new America and respond to that.

    But nevermind. I actually want to see BOURNE LEGACY and will give it a chance if only because of Gilroy. He’s been a good director so far. Plus I want Vern to review it and we all can bitch about the shakey cam and post-action and all those greatest hits.

  30. I like Renner and Gilroy so I’m cautiously optimistic about BOURNE AGAIN. I’m happy with the way the original trilogy ended and don’t need to see them concoct a whole new reason for him to do the same old shit. I’ll be happy to see his NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN in 10 or 15 years, though.

  31. When I was in high school drama classes, i remember a few of us used to joke about recreating that scene as best we could with the Shamu-fu blood spurts and all.

    I actually love both movies but find that the second can be watched over and over while the first is just great to stumble on once in a while, if that makes any sense. “Are they made with real girl scouts?” I think the second is the perfect example of how to take elements of the first that people enjoyed and present them in a way that doesn’t run those elements into the ground. And I love that they took the cookie girl scene from the first and realized it into a longer, hilarious situation. Love that it presented the darkness of the “normals” without it being stale and even with some subtlety (the camp owners especially).

    Just wanted to add that Smith didn’t do a new MiB song because he officially retired from music except in producer form.

  32. I read your post at a glance, Majesyk, and thought it said Damon was (currently) doing a Never Say Never remake. After my first thought of WTF?!, I realized what you meant and still I had to wonder how the fucked-up video game scene would play out considering the advanced tech. Would the villain have some sinister Kinnect(sp) system? Would it be a combat game, something WoW-ish, or something truly frightening like Just Dance Gaga Edition?

  33. RRA – statements by Gilroy, backed up by the trailer, indicate that they purposely did not use the shakycam style for this one.

    I thought the Bourne movies were pretty good and not great, so I’m not the one they should be trying to please, but personally I’m way more interested in this than if they made another one with Damon. I really like Renner and the premise, the new character and new director seem to promise that it will mix it up a little. I know people who think Ultimatum is one of the all time great sequels, but to me it seemed like a bit of a rehash. I’m down for something new.

    I’ll have to sit out MIB 3 though because I haven’t seen part 2 so I won’t know what’s going on and it would just be too hard to watch part 2 I think so I give up.

  34. Damon’s refusal to do BOURNE without Greengrass rankles me for several reason. While it sounds like artistic merits, I think if you’re still going to do generic movies where you run from bad guys, why not just call it Jason Bourne? Also he did IDENTITY with Doug Liman. Why does Greengrass get to own it now?

    Their reasoning is they completed the Jason Bourne story so anything else would lack purpose. Well as artists I trust them to come up with something. In fact I implore them to strive for excellence and find another story to tell. People have more than one story in their lives, especially fictional characters.

    But if there’s no shaky cam LEGACY could be the best BOURNE ever. I think ULTIMATUM works in spite of the style, SUPREMACY is an incomprehensible mess. Both would be better if they planned the shots out.

    Since Vern gives up I will be here to comment on MIB3 on Friday.

  35. I haven’t seen the original Men in Black in I don’t know how long, but I remember liking it as a kid

    I actually saw the sequel in theaters, but damn, talk about an outstandingly mediocre movie, pretty much the only thing I remember about it is Lara Flynn Boyle in black lingerie

    I’m probably gonna pass on the third though and save my money for Prometheus

  36. I like Matt Damon, mostly because I think he’s a good comic actor. But for someone whose such a good comic actor, he’s been awfully humourless about the Bourne films, especially when he compared them to Bond, and said that Bond was an “imperealist misogynist” or some such (kinda true granted, but I think the world has learned to live with that), wheras Borne was about “essence and truth”.

  37. Fred Topel – “People have more than one story in their lives, especially fictional characters.”

    This is so true. Which is why I could never agree with people that go “uh well what is there more to say?” when it comes to any franchise.

  38. “I’ll have to sit out MIB 3 though because I haven’t seen part 2 so I won’t know what’s going on and it would just be too hard to watch part 2 I think so I give up.”

    Vern – Is this true or is this sarcasm? I can’t detect sarcasm well on the webz sometimes.

  39. How about some Addam’s Family reviews in lieu of MiB?

  40. I have seen MIIB: UGH, REALLY? and I agree: It was much too hard to watch it.

  41. RRA – it’s my way of saying I don’t have much interest in those movies. The first one was okay. Maybe some day I’ll watch the other ones.

  42. Will Smith the other day on Graham Norton’s program rapped the FRESH PRINE OF BEL AIR theme.


  43. I can talk about MIB3 now. It’s surprisingly good. Story is more clever than trailers indicate, some cool creatures, not laugh out loud but amusing. Post converted 3D looks great. This will be the go to example for a case against native 3D.

  44. FT – That’s good to hear. indiewire surprisingly gave it a decent review too, but screencrush ripped it a new anus. (At least two of the pre-release reviews that’ve hit online.)

  45. I’m kinda impressed that Smith knows that song. I mean, he didn’t do it live when he still performed as a rapper, did he? I would think he wouldn’t have done it since recording it. But maybe he looks in the mirror and raps it to himself every day.

  46. But does he know the rarely played second verse that takes place on the plane ride out to Bel Air? If he doesn’t, he’s clearly a SELL OUT.

  47. Vern – rewatching that video, I just realized Tom Jones was on the guest couch.

    ~I don’t remember my FRESH PRINCE that well, but wasn’t he Carlton’s favorite singer?

  48. Oh and Pitbull’s song for MIB 3.



  49. Variety and THR actually gave decent write-ups to MIB3, so maybe it’s not the trainwreck we expected after all.

  50. RRA:Yes, yes he was Carlton’s favorite. I used to have a boyfriend who could do the Carlton dance perfectly. I don’t miss that guy but that dance still makes me smile.

    The Pitbull song is ass, but it makes me want to listen to the real “Love is Strange.”

  51. Aw, man, I got all excited thinking Pitbull had sampled a Cheech & Chong song!

  52. I think one reason to be open-minded that this one could be fun in the manner of the first one, as opposed to bad and not-fun in the manner of the second one, is that Sonnenfeld basically seems to have realized that MIB II sucked, and also seems to have a pretty good understanding of what didn’t work about that movie when compared to the first one:


  53. Well, every director who has a little loved sequel and comes back for a further installment always claims to get what went wrong with the last one, but it has to be said there are some nice comments there.

  54. Just (well, last night) saw MIBIII. I was rooting for it to be good, but it just wasn’t. Yes, Brolin is great, but that’s the only major plus point. I’m a little baffled as to how it’s getting a decent ride from critics. Anything you’ve heard about this overcoming the problems of shooting with an unfinished script is untrue; this is an completly unfocused mess, with no direction. This is a film where


    one of the characters figures out J is at the centre of some time travel shenanigans because he suddenly has a craving for chocolate milk! Yes, really. Plus J can remember K when he’s been wiped from everyone else’s memory because, er, “he was there”. Um, OK


    Not sure where the reported $215million budget came from either, this is mostly small scale stuff.

    Probably more damning then any of that though; Smith and TLJ don’t really seem to be able to play these characters any more. TLJ is one-note and monotonous, which is not how I remember him being in the first. Smith just hams it up “big Willy stylee”, as you’d probably expect.

    I barely remember MIBII, but as far as I remember it was just bland and unneccessary, not blatantly sloppy as this one is.

  55. Oh, and the big emotional moment towards the end of the film that Sonnenfeld and others have tried to hype up is reasonably well executed, but it’s also a ret-con which takes some of the fun out of the first film. Boo!

  56. “reported $215 million budget”

    PacmanFever – If Deadline’s report this morning is accurate, it’s much worse. They’re claiming $300 million.

    I’m sorry to hear that it wasn’t that good. I suppose, armchair theory, that alot of the good critical word came because after DARK SHADOWS and BATTLESHIP and WHEN YOU’RE EXPECTING and alots of mediocrity around the place, critics want something watchable after sitting through all that dreck and thus more forgiving. Sometimes that happens.

    As for the [SPOILER] who knows, maybe MIB3 will do for chocolate milk like AVENGERS did for Shwarma? [/SPOILER]

  57. Does anybody remember the cartoon?

    I actually rewatched some episdoes on YouTube, and it was actually decent. The best was when they went to Hollywood and the MIB branch there (the Agency), quite funny in fact. A nice storytelling surprise or two, plus killer ending line. More humor, wit, and creativity in this 20 minute episode than in all of the second MIB movie.


  58. I liked the cartoon, and I’m always surprised when people tell me they never thought it was any good. In fact, I thought of how much more interesting J and K seemed in the cartoon when watching MIBIII. The one I always remember is the one where J accidently “neuralises” K and takes him back to when he was 19. It was generally a lot less tongue-in-cheek than the first movie though, which I think is what might have put some people off.

  59. I saw one episode of it and yeah, I think it seemed good. I definitely think it was cool that they kept Kay as the mentor but also added “Elle” as an agent too despite diverting from the film’s ending making that unnecessary.

  60. I watched that episode posted above (well, kind of had it on in the background TBH) and I was surprised by the number of real-life name drops there were in it (“If Helen Hunt can break out of TV so can I!” “We can bigger than the Baldwing brothers!” etc.), made it seem that much sharper. Most kids’ cartoons would pull that “Schmaldwin Brothers” kinda shit.

  61. Pacman – Personally I liked that joke that the MIB movies we have are movies too in that cartoon universe, and to make that creative schism concrete, they draw ultra-realistic animated chariactures of Smith and Jones to contrast with the usual design models for those characters.

  62. Just revisited MIB I to get ready for MIBIII (I know i saw the 2nd one, but i can’t remember a single thing about it – in fact I mixed up which gags were in which movie) Anyway, yeah – i hated it in ’97, but don’t mind it too much now, though it certainly wasn’t good. There’s of course some good ideas and fx, but there’s a weird cheapness on display – it just looks and feels flat and the “climax” is a joke. I’m not sure if it’s funny or sad that a big summer movie was this slight yet people still ate it up.

    It doesn’t help that the trailers gave away literally every good joke in the movie (and several reveals, including the villain’s alien form, what the mysterious red button in the card does, etc…) Vincent D’Onofrio’s performance as the villain kinda sums up my feelings on the movie – it’s a weird performance that’s just as tic-y and imitable as Ledger’s Joker or something in Nicolas Cage’s oeuvre , but it just comes off flat and boring, despite sounding like a home run on paper. Tommy Lee Jones has never been less interesting on screen than he is here, and him and Smith have zero chemistry. I can’t believe they made 3 buddy movies from this pair. Also, Will Smith is obnoxious and unlikable in MIB – it’s not that he’s bad, per se – but I think his performance exemplifies everything people hate about him (and I like him in almost every other movie!)

  63. Revisited MIB II, and holy crap, I’m surprised to say I really liked it this time. I can see how everyone (including me) thought it was forgettable, but I liked it alot better than the first one – the jokes are funnier, Jones and Smith have more chemistry, and Smith tones down his cocky-asshole schtick so he’s not nearly as off-putting. Plus this one has more creative bad guys and an actual climax that, while underwhelming again, at least feels somewhat like a summer movie. I can see why people didn’t care for Lara Flynn Boyle as the villain, but I thought she actually played it in an interesting, unusual way – impatient and hurried and tired, as opposed to minxy and seductive like you figured they would have her play.

    In a weird way MIB II reminds me of Predator 2, a movie that people are quick to dismiss as “it never happened”, but it contributed a ton to the series lore and canon. I didn’t realize how little Tony Shalhoub, the dog, and the worm guys were in MIB I, and how most of the best MIB gags (the giant subway worm, the guys in the locker, the statue of liberty gag) were actually from this movie.

    Also: is there any actual footage from the scrapped World Trade Center climax? I assume that explains what the hell happened to Johnny Knoxville’s character.

  64. I never understood why people HATED part 2 anyway. It is one of those weaker sequels that we get all the time, but the amount of hate it constantly gets, makes it look like some kind of SyFy WINGED SWAMP CROCOFANTOPUS movie.

  65. Finished my MIB marathon with part 3 at the IMAX – it was fun, pleasant, certainly watchable but I’d surprisingly list it behind #2 (a movie I loathed up until a few days ago). The fx and 3D were fine, there was more action this time and it was shot better than before (seriously, rewatch part 1- Sonenfeld had no idea how to stage the little “action” there was) Smith is finally charming and likeable, Brolin is great, Jones is in it more than I expected. Clement is fantastic as the bad guy. He plays it entirely straight and is not funny at all, and the movie is much better for it. Emma Thompson/Alice Eve were both a little wasted though. I’d still recommend it as a fun diversion.

    SORTA SPOILERS: Isn’t it weird that for light breezy, comedic summer entertainment, all 3 of the MIB movies have bittersweet, possibly tearjerking endings? The one in this one is out of left field (yet kinda predictable, if that makes sense) but I’ll be damned if it didn’t get me or the audience all misty-eyed.

  66. Paul Thomas Anderson was being interviewed for some paper and he said he quite liked MIB 3, and how he cried at the ending.

    For some reason, this is funny to me. Not HAHA funny but isn’t that charming? funny.

  67. I always loved how directors, who have the reputation of being arts or heady often confess their love for popcorn movies. Like Christopher Nolan, who admitted to be a huge fan of Michael Bay (and apparently Zack Snyder).

  68. Me too. Kubrick was a big fan of comedies, ultimately leading to pen-pal/phone friendships with people like Albert Brooks. He originally wanted to do EYES WIDE SHUT as a comedy, wanted Steve Martin for the lead and Woody Allen for the role Sydney Pollack ultimately did.

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  70. Would it be in bad taste to write RIP Rip?

  71. Am I the only one who noticed that this movie recently found some new appreciation? It went from “I like it, but if someone asks, I say it’s lame” to “Damn, this holds up really well”.

  72. Must admit I hadn’t noticed. Thought it was fairly beloved among the general public (at least those alive in 97) anyway TBH.

    Odd bit of trivia for the Men In Black trilogy; all three films got a B+ Cinemascore on their original release. This seems very at odds with their general reputation to me; the second seemed to instantly be declared one of the biggest quality drops in recent memory, and the third seemed to be widely considered a bit improvement, and the first was and is far more popular than either of them. Makes me wonder how that came about.

    Also, I thought MEN IN BLACK: INTERNATIONAL was OK. Even quite liked it for most of the time, but it went on a little too long to keep me distracted from the overwhelming 5/10ness at its core. But I don’t think that’s a huge step down from the previous sequels, and I liked its approach to soft-rebooting.

  73. Yeah, the first was well loved by audiences and critics, but then at some point it became one of those “Nah, we actually never really liked it” things. But now more and more people on the internet act like it is some kind of forgotten gem, that deserves to be rediscovered. Especially D’onofrio’s performance suddenly gets all kind of praise. (Rightfully)

  74. The only thing I like about MIB is the great time about people being dumb, panicky animals.

  75. CJ – Yes, I’ve heard two podcasts recently that raved on and on about MIB 1 – one even called it a “masterpiece” which I think is insane. I was about to write my thoughts about Part 1 but they’re a couple of comments up in the thread if you’re interested. And I agree with Sternshein – that one oft-quoted line about “A person is smart, people are dumb” or whatever is easily the best thing in the movie and hints at something smarter.

    I saw MIB International on a plane. I can’t remember a single thing about it except I was surprised Rebecca Ferguson was in it for a few minutes and Tessa Thompson, as much as I liked her in the Creed movies, doesn’t really have what it takes to headline a movie like this. I also don’t think she has any chemistry with Hemsworth at all despite now being in three movies together. But the movie’s fine I guess, even though like Pacman says it runs on too damn long like every movie these days.

  76. “Masterpiece” really goes a bit far, but as someone who always thought that the backlash was not just too harsh, but also completely unjustified, I am happy to see the movie get re-evaluated and praised by “the internet”.

    Barry Sonnenfeld also recently released his biography and I really wanna read it.

  77. MIB is pretty damn great. No fat, moves fast, awesome villain and I love how the action is shot personally. The first chase with Smith and that jumping alien is excellentlly shot.

    I remember 2 being so-so with some great stuff like the mailroom. 3 was surprisinly good. I loooove the character who sees all the possibilities, what a great idea and written and performed perfectly.

  78. When I rewatched it for my ’90s comic book movie piece I felt like it held up slightly better than I expected, and now I don’t remember anything about it. Which has always been my feeling about the movie, I guess. It’s fine. I think maybe what happened is it’s just clever and cute enough to hold up one shockingly short feature length movie, but they tried to make it into an ongoing blockbuster franchise.

  79. I’ve always been willing to call MIB something of a minor masterpiece (I said so in this very comment section 8 years ago). It’s got a great cast playing broad but distinct characters, a fun premise which it makes constant and imaginative use of, a zippy pace, an energetic and memorable Danny Elfman score, and about the maximum possible weird monsters and sci-fi gimmicks you could stuff into 90 minutes. If you would enjoy that sort of silly action-comedy, MIB is about as good as it gets. I’d argue it’s as good or better than GHOSTBUSTERS, for example, which is playing in the same register.

    It never needed any sequels, and I haven’t even seen INTERNATIONAL, but I think the retrospective praise for the first one is well-deserved.

  80. Weird as it sounds I think if it weren’t for this, Tommy Lee Jones never would have done something like NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN. Sonnenfeld tells the story that when they were shooting this, TLJ would deliver his lines in a more over-the-top way before being cut off and told to deliver it completely flat. If you think about some of his perfomances before this, Jones did a good job chewing the scenery by gesticulating, shouting and generally dominating the physical space around him. He eventually realized Sonnenfeld was right, and I think that seeped into what he would do later. By doing less he really can bring out more, which he of course did brilliantly for the Coens.

  81. Yeah, Jones used to be more of a bezerk scene stealer kind of actor. It’s why he fucked up Two-Face, I think they wanted him to play that character scarier too but I guess he didn’t want to be upstaged by Jim Carrey so he figured hey I might as well tank this character totally and make this really stupid.

  82. After watching MIB INTERNATIONAL on TV, I really got a new appreciation for all the big and small things that made the first three movies so popular. F. Gary Gray is competent, but he lacks the style and talent to stage the weirdest shit with a dry wit like Sonnenfeld. (Also the movie really lacks any weird shit, like giant cockroaches, talking pugs, villains made out of fingers, a two-headed Johnny Knoxville or a four-dimensional alien.) Hemsworth and Thompson are good, but they oddly lack any chemistry (depite their great chemistry in THOR³) and their bickering will-they-won’t-they dynamic isn’t as entertaining as the charming goofball/straightest straight man dynamic of Smith and Jones (or Brolin). And without Rick Baker, the alien design is weirdly bland and cookie cutter, except for the twins (who were clearly the highlight of the movie) and the surprisingly scary looking endboss.

    It’s not as awful as many people say, but it really is…just there. The only thing that pissed me off and almost ruined the movie for me, was that tiny alien sidekick, that came straight out of the hellfire of a shitty 80s cartoon. Nothing he said was funny and nothing he did was important. He was a walking “Put something in the movie that appeals to really young kids” studio note.

  83. Watching some episodes of the cartoon on YouTube, and it holds up very well. Too bad it seems to be almost completely forgotten. I wish the kids today were walking around wearing T-Shirts that said MEN IN BLACK: THE SERIES, rather than SCRUBS :(

    Is GHOSTBUSTERS the only franchise to actively embrace the cartoon spin-off as part of its legacy? I understand even those EXTREME GHOSTBUSTER jokesters come back in comic books from time to time. It would be funny if ACE VENTURA 3 or something equally desperate drew on the deep lore from its cartoon.

    CJ from 17 months ago; I agree the Alien sidekick from part INTERNATIONAL is pretty loathsome, at least Snarf or Blarp or whoever never riffed about Kanye giving him a private concert. Ugh!

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