Men in Black: International – Film Review

I loved the original Men in Black and I’m a huge fan of Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson so I figured Men in Black: International was onto a winner. Sadly I have to report that it’s a bland, forgettable action movie. What a shame.

Thompson stars as a woman whose memory wasn’t successfully wiped with a neuralizer after an alien encounter as a child so she has spent her life tracking aliens and trying to be hired by a secret organisation that deals with the extraterrestrials so she can do what she loves for a living. She finally manages to track down MIB and is given a probationary assignment to the London office, where she must team up with Agent H (Hemsworth) and identify the mole within the ranks.

The original Men in Black trilogy got progressively weaker as it went on, and this instalment –  a new story which takes place in the same universe as the others – doesn’t buck that trend, despite the seven-year gap. I had assumed that the team had waited for this long for a sequel slash spin-off because they were creating a solid storyline that was worthy of a new film, but this fails to justify its existence. The story wasn’t exciting or compelling, I didn’t care about the plot or the characters and it whipped long at such a pace it was hard to follow.

Thompson’s character was cool and I liked her introduction. I loved how she was determined to join MIB and made it happen. She looked awesome and was the Will Smith replacement – the newbie and our eyes into this weird and wonderful world. She does the best with what she’s given, but tbh, she deserves to lead a fresh franchise rather than join one which has run out of gas. She had pre-existing chemistry with Hemsworth, who did a decent job as the heavy-drinking womaniser, because they’ve worked together before on Thor: Ragnarok and Avengers: Endgame but the film didn’t really make the most of it. They were let down by a weak script that was not very funny.

They have support from Emma Thompson, who returns as MIB boss, Agent O, Liam Neeson – who is in a bigger role than expected given his recent controversy – who plays Hemsworth’s boss High T and Rafe Spall as Agent C. On the alien side of things we have Rebecca Ferguson as Riza, Agent H’s alien ex-girlfriend, and Kumail Nanjiani, who voices Pawny, a cute little alien sidekick. He was clearly conceived to be the new Frank the dog (who is in it a little) but he’s not quite as fun, though he made me laugh the most. Beyonce fans will also notice her French dancers – known as Les Twins – making their movie debut.

Men in Black: International just felt rushed and sloppy and was not half as fun as it was trying to be. It does have some entertaining and funny moments but not enough for me to give this a positive review. It’s such a shame because the leads deserve better.

In cinemas Friday 14th June 

Rating: 2/5

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