Spies Like Us

1985, Movie, PG, 109 mins


Austin Millbarge (Dan Aykroyd) and Emmett Fitz-Hume (Chevy Chase) are a pair of bumbling government workers handpicked by the CIA to be decoy agents in a highly secretive mission. The two end up in the camp of some Afghan rebels, where a volunteer medical team mistakes them for a pair of important doctors. When the error is uncovered, the two are off on the road to nowhere trying to find out about this unnamed mission. Karen Boyer (Donna Dixon), one of the doctors at the rebel camp, hooks up with the boys, for she is actually a "real" CIA agent who seems to know what this mysterious mission entails. Director John Landis tries to evoke the spirit of the Bob Hope-Bing Crosby "Road" pictures, but not even a brief cameo by Hope himself can breathe much life into this film. The nature of their mission is kept hidden from both the bumbling spies and the audience until the movie's climax, but the buildup is so tedious and unfunny that the payoff just isn't there. Landis' direction is indulgent, to say the least, with big landscapes, big crashes, big hardware, and big gags filling the screen. What he forgets is character development, that all-important factor that must exist for comedy to work well. leave a comment

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