AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDyet another movie that didn’t get to premiere in theaters because of the asshole known as COVID-19. Without me dragging this review into extreme boredom by re-stating my theory in detail of why these studios are choosing to release these films straight to streaming instead of just waiting for theaters to reopen back up, I’ll just sum it up in 4 words: They aren’t any good. And that theory has been proven time and time again, except for one exception: The King Of Staten Island. I heard Trolls: World Tour sucked, I’m told that You Should Have Left sucked, the grapevine has told me that The High Note with Dakota Johnson wasn’t that great, I thought Scoob! was a massive disappointment, I thought The Lovebirds was mediocre, and I’m about to review another $19.99 premium rental after this that wasn’t very good, have I covered everything thus far? Now here we are at MY SPY, that instead of waiting for theaters to re open, was just dumped this past weekend on Amazon Prime. And unfortunately, it adds onto the pile of new premium VOD releases that haven’t been any good. But this review is going to come with a very special disclaimer: this film was never meant for me (Trolls: World Tour probably wasn’t either to be fair). But then that raises the question…who is this film really for?
The reason I ask that question is that this movie is rated PG-13 and has a pretty hefty amount of explosions, people getting shot and killed, stabbed, accidental knife throw injuries, and it even has a very shoddy looking CGI decapitated head flying across a screen. Yet, the movie is basically a love child of Cop And A Half & Kindergarten Cop (both superior to this, IMO), with enough goofy innocent shenanigans & banter between Bautista and child actress Chloe Coleman to make it a little less harmful than the two movies I just mentioned. So what, in my opinion only of course, is the age ranges of this movie? Now remember, before I answer that question, any movie that you put out on the market, the age range needs to expand more than a 10 year period. With My Spy, I’d say the age of enjoyment would only be from ages 6 to 10, and be only really appropriate with its PG-13 rating from ages 8 to 10. 10 years and older, will think that this film is silly and stupid, unless you are a teenager or an adult with a child like heart of gold. So when you do the math, that is only a 4 year range of enjoyment, with a 2 year range of appropriateness. Needless to say, that is not a very marketable movie for Hollywood studios. Because as I watched this with very minor enjoyment at a couple of scenes, I had trouble seeing this film make any sort of money whatsoever if it had debuted in theaters. Hence, I guess that’s why it was ultimately released on Amazon Prime.
But there were plenty of scenes while watching this where they could’ve cut some of the violence to get that coveted PG rating I think they were going for. There was unnecessary language at parts that could’ve been cut out. They didn’t need the decapitation gag for sure. And some of the deaths could’ve happened off screen. Due to the nature of the plot per IMDB.com, it really shouldn’t have been as violent as it was: “A hardened CIA operative finds himself at the mercy of a precocious 9-year-old girl, having been sent undercover to surveil her family.” That sounds like a goofy family friendly fun. Well it is goofy, a little too much for believability sake sometimes, but it isn’t that family friendly. Well, it is and it isn’t, you all with families will be the ultimate judge. I’m just reviewing the movie based on what I thought of it alone: it was a cheesy, cliched filled, nothing you haven’t seen before in a movie like this, dumb, one time-watch. It had a couple of moments of chuckled originality, but isn’t that great in terms of quality by any means. Dave Bautista at least looks like he wanted to be there, this is the most tolerable I’ve ever been in regards to the performance of Ken Jeong, Kristen Schaal is still playing her annoying character from The Last Man On Earth, and kid actor Chloe Coleman steals all of the scenes she is in.
The film is directed okay, although a lot of the action scenes are very CGI sketchy and kind of bland in terms of location shooting and choreography. This needed to be directed by an action director that can also do a bit of comedy, of which Peter Segal is the latter but not the former. He’s directed only two of, what you would call, “action pictures.” The Naked Gun 3 and Get Smart, both of which weren’t very good. I’d say this is on par with those. An okay effort, but mainly fruitless. There is a lot more of you out there that will totally disagree with me on this, and that is okay, like I said, this movie wasn’t made for me. I was just bored on a Saturday afternoon and I figured, okay, if I watch this with my wife in the room, this would’ve been like paying $20 on a night out at the theater, but it is now for free since it went straight to streaming. That’s what this film will ultimately be known for to me, that it saved me $20. Will I revisit it after a little time has passed and when Grayson is a little older? Maybe between those ages I talked about above. It also depends on his taste at the time. But will I ever seek this movie out again for pure enjoyment? Absolutely fucking not. Look on the bright side, at least it was better than Dave Bautista’s last film, which was a little R rated comedy called Stuber. How a PG-13 kids film was better than that garbage, I will never know. I spy, with my little eye, a film that will be forgotten in a few months time.