The “Men in Black” series was adapted from a series of comic books that were published in the early ’90s. Seven years later, director Barry Sonnenfeld released the first of what would eventually be a trilogy of movies. The first movie was received extremely well by critics, and in my opinion, it had a great impact on the future success of Will Smith.
Five years later in 2002 Barry Sonnenfeld continued his vision with Men in Black II. With that, he almost completely erased the darker elements that were spawned from the first installment and replaced it with overused comedy gimmicks and a narcoleptic story that limped into a prosaic climax.
Now, 10 years after the last installment, Barry Sonnenfeld returns for a third time in an attempt to fix his mistakes and bring back the familiar sci-fi/comedy formula that people fell in love with 15 years ago.
Men in Black 3 brings back the original duo of Will Smith as Agent J and Tommy Lee Jones as Agent K. In this storyline, a deadly rogue alien by the name of Boris the Animal, played by Jemaine Clement, jumps back in time to seek revenge on Agent K for taking his arm and bringing extinction to his race. When this happens, Agent J travels back to the 60’s to stop this from happening. He is greeted by a younger and more lighthearted Agent K, portrayed by Josh Brolin. Together they try to stop Boris and set the time line of events straight.
Right off the bat we are introduced to Boris the Animal, and I have to say that this villain exceeded my expectations with his remorseless brutality and snarky attitude. Unrecognizable Jemaine Clement gives a fantastic performance. While I am talking about characters, Josh Brolin’s performance as K was spot on. He was perfectly cast and gives a subversive performance that convinces you that you’re truly watching a younger version of Tommy Lee Jones.
A lot of the previous mistakes that Barry Sonnenfeld made with the previous installment were definitely patched up. Including the story, which stays consistent and entertaining, fitted with a climax that rivals that of the first movie.
This movie also does something that we are starting to see a lot more of in movies. It uses smart 3D. It doesn’t throw things in your face or go out of its way to make the audience flinch. It uses 3D to add a cool perspective to the movie and put an extra emphasis on the special effects.
A few negatives that I did pick up from the film: Once again this movie stayed away from the darker elements that were so appealing in the first film. I think the dark humor is what drove the first film. The action scenes drive hard early in the film with alien stand offs and shootouts. However, later in the film, it’s lost and replaced with very generic action found in standard action films.
All in all Men in Black 3 corrects errors made by it’s previous installment and at the very least, delivers consistent entertainment and a fun imagery throughout.
The DeLaCruz Designation: B-