MOVIE REVIEW: ‘Men in Black 3’ skates by on charm

By M. Scott Morris/NEMS Daily Journal

The original “Men in Black” had the twin benefits of charm and novelty.
The charm came from the pairing of Tommy Lee Jones’ terse Agent K with Will Smith’s free-wheelin’ Agent J. The state-of-the-art special effects that brought all manner of crazy aliens to life provided the novelty. The combination equaled a good time at the movies.
“Men in Black 3” must rely on charm alone because, thanks to the previous movies, there’s nothing new about a Chinese waiter with alien parts below the waist.
This time around, Boris the Animal (Jemaine Clement) escapes from a prison on the moon and goes back in time in hopes of starting an alien invasion of earth.
Agent K has disappeared, so Agent O (Emma Thompson) sends Agent J to 1969, where he teams up with a young Agent K (Josh Brolin).
Brolin does great work as the younger K, and his interplay with Smith keeps the story moving along.
The past includes run-ins with Andy Warhol (Bill Hader), and a multi-dimensional being, Griffin (Michael Stuhlbarg), who gives the characters and the audience dollops of information about the tangled threads of time.
We also meet a young Agent O (Alice Eve) in the past. There’s more than a suggestion that she and K have a thing going on, but this never pays off. If you hire an actress of Emma Thompson’s caliber, you really should do more with her. Please keep that in mind if you’re ever in such a position.
There are funny moments in “Men in Black 3,” though not as many as I would’ve hoped. The story pulls you along but never sucks you in.
My wife said if you want to get out of the heat for a couple of hours, there are worse ways to spend your time than by watching “MIB3.” That’s not high praise, but you should never underestimate the value of air conditioning in Mississippi.
I give “Men in Black 3” a C minus.
It’s showing at the Cinemark in Tupelo, as well as Malcos in Oxford, Corinth and Columbus, Hollywood Premier Cinemas in Starkville and Movie Reel 4 in New Albany.
Look for movie reviews in Scene on Thursdays, and listen each Tuesday morning on Wizard 106.7 between 8:30 and 8:45 a.m.

Kelli Karlson with Wizard 106.7 gives “Men in Black 3” a B plus.

“I had a really good time. It was not as good as the first one, but much better than the second.”

“Roadkill” Bill with Wizard 106.7 gives “Men in Black 3” a B minus.

“I loved the villain, and had a lot of fun with this movie.”