By The Nerdling
Do you adore Kate McKinnon? Because I absolutely do. When she and Leslie Jones leave Saturday Night Live, I don’t know if I will be willing to continue watching the sketch series. Their appearances and characters are the best thing about the show.
McKinnon’s involvement in The Spy Who Dumped Me was a massive selling point for me to want to see this movie. Mila Kunis and Sam Heughan also starring in the flick pushed my want to give Lionsgate my money, but McKinnon is the biggest draw. She is a big saving grace for this buddy-comedy-action-spy thriller on more than one occasion.
Not that The Spy Who Dumped Me needs too much saving. I very much enjoyed the fasted paced action and the faster wit of the two female stars. But this is more of a high body count action thriller than a buddy comedy. Less Beverly Hills Cop and more Beverly Hills Cop II.
Kunis and McKinnon play Audrey and Morgan, two best friends who end up in a whirlwind adventure through Vienna, Prague, Paris, and Berlin after Audrey’s ex-boyfriend, Drew (Justin Theroux) is revealed to be a CIA field agent. Now Audrey and Morgan must get the thing to a person or there is going to be lots of death (McGuffin details really don’t matter). The two women are chased all through Europe by bad guys, as well as MI-6 agent Sebastian (Heughan) and CIA agent Duffer (Hasan Minhaj). But are they trustworthy? The two men are spies and Drew said not to trust anyone.
The Spy Who Dumped Me uses the easy chemistry between Kunis and McKinnon to its advantage. It is fairly obvious McKinnon adlibs many of her lines and Kunis rolls with it like a pro. Gillian Anderson, in a small role, also handle’s McKinnon’s improvisations with hilariously dry-witted ease. The trailer only gives you a taste as to how hysterical their interaction plays out. The men don’t get as much to do comedy wise, but who cares. This is the Kunis/McKinnon show. There is a romance subplot involving Audrey and Sebastian, but the film’s true love story is centered around Audrey and Morgan’s friendship and girl-power motivations they give one another. Audrey is a bit of a sad sack who bemoans she hasn’t done much with her life, but strangely is good at everything, works with Morgan’s super-feminism, the world-is-your-oyster-if-only-you-would-take-it attitude.
Most of the comedy, which unfortunately includes more poop humor than necessary (do they add that so guys would find the movie funny?), is quickly undercut by large bursts of action. A massive shootout in a café, a car chase through the streets of Vienna, a brawl during a Cirque de Soleil act while on the trapeze. Like I said, it was enjoyable for me, but I love my action films. Especially when they star women and they kick ass. But a part of me wishes writer/director Susanna Fogel would have focused more on the buddy-comedy aspect of the movie than the thrills. She could have gotten so much more mileage out of Kunis and McKinnon.
The Spy Who Dumped Me is a fun end of summer, popcorn flick filled with high action and hilarious moments. I left the theater hoping for a sequel mostly because I want to see Kunis and McKinnon share a screen again. Hollywood, please get on that.
The Nerdling was born in the majestic land known as Texas and currently resides there after several years of journeying through Middle Earth in a failed attempt to steal the one Ring from that annoying hobbit, serving the Galactic Empire for a time, and then a short stint as a crew member on the Serenity. Since moving back to her homeland, Nerdling flirted with a hero reputation. Saving children from the dangers of adoring domineering, sparkly vampires (champions with souls are the only vampires worth loving) and teaching normals the value of nerdom, all while rooting for her beloved Dallas Stars. Then came the Sokovia Accords and her short spell of saving others came to an end. With Darth Vader’s reputation rightfully returning to badass status, Nerdling is making her way back to the Empire. They do have cookies, you know. You can find her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.