THE SPY WHO DUMPED ME -- Grade: B
Updated: Aug 24, 2018
I just kept thinking this would be a whole lot better with Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy, but still: some good laughs, good action and a female director.
#TheSpyWhoDumpedMe follows the European adventures of Audrey (#MilaKunis) and her wacky BFF Morgan (an OTT #KateMacKinnon), who jet off to the continent after Audrey's secret-agent boyfriend tells her she has to deliver an important package to Vienna. Many shootouts and car chases ensue. You've pretty much seen it all before, but there are some clever gags (where does a girl hide a thumb-drive these days?) and their over-their-heads antics provide a few good laughs. Plus, it's always nice to see a depiction of female best friends who are always supportive of one another, who don't bicker and who actually enjoy each other's company. BUT...
I'm Kinda Done With the Whole Kate MacKinnon Shtick
She's undoubtedly a talented comedian, but enough with the mugging and the weird, loud stuff already. The problem is, you never believe you're watching an actual person. Other SNL stars don't have that issue -- Amy Poehler, Leslie Jones, Ana Gasteyer, Aidy Bryant and others are equally funny, but can handle an actual acting role. But MacKinnon's real out-there quirkiness (as with Kristen Wiig) doesn't lend itself to supporting, secondary characters. She needs a movie as weird as she is -- not a mainstream Hollywood action-comedy like this.
The supporting cast is nice enough to let the ladies really shine -- Justin Theroux and Sam Heughan (#Outlander) as the agents and Gillian Armstrong does her boss-lady thing as the boys' superior. Total comedy pros Jane Curtin and Paul Reiser make amusing cameos. And I was v. impressed by director / co-writer #SusannaFogel -- great work on the action scenes, and though the story was by-the-numbers, there were some surprisingly funny bits. I've seen Mila Kunis better, though (in #BadMoms, for one), and felt like a different pairing would've really helped.
That said, the film's official website has some nice female-focused features, including a gallery of movie posters designed by women artists.
Femme Critic Score:
Female Director: Yep
Female Writers: 1 woman, 1 man
Female Cast: Check!
Passes the Bechdel Test? For sure