'Men in Black: International' Review
Men in Black: International is a 2019 science fiction action comedy film directed by F. Gary Gray and written by Art Marcum and Matt Holloway. It is a spin-off of the Men in Black film series, which is loosely based on the Malibu/Marvel comics of the same name by Lowell Cunningham. The film stars Chris Hemsworth, Tessa Thompson, Kumail Nanjiani, Rebecca Ferguson, Rafe Spall, Laurent and Larry Bourgeois, Emma Thompson, and Liam Neeson, with Tim Blaney also reprising his role as Frank the Pug from the first two films.
The Men in Black have expanded to cover the globe but so have the villains of the universe. To keep everyone safe, decorated Agent H and determined rookie M join forces, an unlikely pairing that just might work. When aliens that can take the form of any human arrive on Earth, H and M embark on a globe-trotting adventure to save the agency and ultimately the world from their mischievous plans.
Men in Black: International was flat out disappointing. There's really no other words for it. The film wasn't very good and now I'm sad.
I'd be lying if I said I wasn't looking forward to this film. I loved the original Men in Black film, and while the other two weren't great, there was some fun to be had. This, however, is probably the worst in the franchise. I wasn't expecting it to be great. It's 2019 and Hollywood dug up and revived another dead franchise to make an unneeded sequel. Men in Black: International was never meant to be good and wasn't. However, I thought it was going to be a bad but fun film. I would have been perfectly happy with that, but the film really isn't that fun.
I didn't find the film to be very funny. Which is saying something because it doesn't take much to crack me up. The alien they meet named Pawny, however, was very funny and one of the best parts of the film. However, other than that character, the most the film got out of me was a smile, and it had more to do with the two lead's chemistry.
Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson were great together. Thor and Valkyrie take off their capes and put on suits, and they did an amazing job at it. They were the main reason why I found this film watchable, but they felt wasted.
Both characters got a little depth, story, and a small arc, but it just gets thrown away for the sake of the plot (which wasn't very good). The way their story's ended up just felt so cheap.
Another problem with the film was that the story itself was very weak. They had a decent enough foundation, but didn't build on it whatsoever. They also had an interesting premise, but it becomes very obvious very quickly where it's going to end up. They didn't really try to build up what they considered the twist. The film just slowly moves from scene one to scene two.
The action scenes were also very disappointing. If there's one thing a Hollywood film has, it's a half decent action scene, but here they all felt so lazy. F. Gary Gray is a director I really like. He knows how to put together a good action film. He did The Fate of the Furious which I really enjoyed, but here it fell flat. The scenes were short and uneventful. In terms of action, just like the plot, they did the bare minimum.
Men in Black: International just never picked up. The ending was split into two different parts, and both parts felt short, rushed, and underwhelming. The characters were wasted, and a supposedly emotional scene just comes off as cheap. The film surprised me in many ways, they just weren't good surprises. Men in Black missed the mark so many times in so many ways.
Overall, the film was very disappointing. The film just wasn't that good. After this, they need to put this franchise back in the grave where they dug it out of.
The acting was one of the few bright spots.
Chris Hemsworth was great. He and Tessa Thompson, who was equally as great, did well together. They played off each other really well, and their chemistry was instant. Chris Hemsworth proved he could do well in a comedy in Thor: Ragnarok, and this was not different. Tessa Thompson is an actress I really like, and she gave life to an at times dull character.
Liam Neeson was good, but he wasn't in the film a whole lot. Emma Thompson was also great in the very short amount of time she was on screen. Kumail Nanjiani also did an excellent job with his voice acting.
Overall the acting was solid, and without a doubt one of the better parts of the film.
The plot for the film was very weak.
The film started off promising as we see a young Tessa Thompson's first encounter with aliens and the Men in Black, but from there it never really picked back up. The film felt so lazy yet so rushed.
The plot itself was so weak. The main villains were intriguing at first, but they get zero development. As the film went along, they just seemed to be there. There were multiple times when the film could have ended but it didn't.
After the first act, when all the freshness and nostalgia wore off, not a lot happened. The plot itself was weak to begin with, but then they stretch it so thin. The worst part about it is that they treat it like it's a lot more complicated and sophisticated than it really is.
Another part that really bugged me was how Chris Hemsworth's character's story was handled. For most of the film, we keep hearing that he's not the same person he was before, and that he's somehow changed. It was interesting enough and I wanted to know what happened, but then they reveal what happened. I really didn't like it and thought it was cheap.
I also found the climax to be anti climatic. Just like the rest of the film, not a lot happened. Overall, the plot was weak and really drug down the film. It was probably the worst part of the film.
Overall, Men in Black: International was a disappointing attempt to revive a dead franchise. Great performances get wasted by a dull plot and lackluster action sequences. The film didn't even try to make an attempt to do something different then the other films. This one followed to exact same formula, but forgot all the charm and fun that made the first one great.
Overall, it wasn't a great film, and I found it extremely disappointing. Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson aren't enough to save Men in Black: International from being arguably the worst in the franchise.
© 2019 Royce Proctor