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Overall Rating
3.6

Awesome: 17.45%
Worth A Look44.3%
Average: 25.5%
Pretty Bad: 6.71%
Total Crap: 6.04%

14 reviews, 65 user ratings


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Mystery Men
[AllPosters.com] Buy posters from this movie
by Improv King

"Ehh... okay I guess."
3 stars

Ever since the uber-camp of Batman & Robin, the whole comic book hero movie genre has never been riper for satire. There are many cliches that are deflated and tuned inside out for yuks throughout. Besides, who among us has never at least once seriously considered how cool it would be to have a superpower, no matter how lame? Ultimately, though, Mystery Men falls into the same trap as the movies it makes fun of - too much money spent on sets, not enough on the script.

The biggest problem with the film is its main character, Mr. Furious, played by Ben Stiller. Furious is supposed to be powered by his own fury (which he always threatens to release), but he's really just a schmucky wannabe whose power is completely fake - he's a super-hero poseur. This is funny for the first few minutes, but as the movie goes on Stiller's impotent whining becomes less and less sympathetic, and a drag on the film. Same too with Paul Reubens' Spleen - super flatulence is a one-note joke at best (although I couldn't help but giggle "Hee Hee, that's Pee-Wee!" every time he spoke). The script is disappointing because it plays both sides of the fence - while making fun of such standard cliches as "all the hero needs to disguise himself is a pair of glasses" and "all heroes must enter/leave with a witty turn of phrase", the cliche of "the hero discovers their power was inside them all the time" is used not once, but TWICE!
So why go and see Mystery Men, or at least rent it on video? Three reasons:
1. Geoffrey Rush. The lines he gets in the film don't do him justice, but goddamn, he's a great supervillain.
2. Janeane Garofalo. Very good casting for a film like this: with her semi-detached "I don't really need this" air, she gets all the best laughs.
3. BILL MACY. This guy should get a Oscar nod for this one: out of all the super-characters in this film, he's the only one I believed every step of the way. The Shoveler should get his own movie!

Just a couple of random notes to end on: 1.Give credit to the film makers for not playing that Smashmouth song to death on the soundtrack. 2. Eddie Izzard should fire his agent - after being in the complete disaster The Avengers, THIS is his follow up?!?

link directly to this review at https://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=1329&reviewer=114
originally posted: 08/21/99 11:46:20
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User Comments

12/14/13 Mister Jimmy The super-hero auditions scene had me laffin my ass off! 5 stars
1/29/09 Nori This was one of those super corney awful movies that you absolutely loved. I enjoyed it. 5 stars
11/22/08 Shaun Wallner Great Film! 4 stars
9/14/08 nastyrabbit There's never been an ensemble cast with this kind of chemistry before....it's PERFECT! 5 stars
12/06/07 Adrian BUT I AM SCARED OF THE SUZIES! 5 stars
4/16/07 Ne44FaSt Funny when they accidently psychofraculate Capt. Amazing 5 stars
7/29/06 David Cohen Speaks to the inner hero in all of us 4 stars
1/23/06 Indrid Cold I had heard that this is a lot funnier than you'd expect. It's true. 4 stars
5/03/05 dwarzel There are heroes/villains in the Marvel universe with MUCH lamer gimmicks than these. 4 stars
1/25/05 Jeff Anderson MY KIND OF UNIQUE SUPER HERO FILM! A great double feature with THE SPECIALS with Rob Lowe. 5 stars
9/05/04 DM Silly but perfect for your inner 10-year old 4 stars
6/08/04 Elen Sly and witty, and fun for comic book geeks and non-geeks alike. 5 stars
1/07/04 Phil M. Aficionado Bizarre. A gas. Great casting. Must have cost a FORTUNE to make 4 stars
4/13/03 Jack Sommersby Forced and uncouth nonsense. Stiller's panache is film's only asset. 1 stars
7/20/02 Bastard Child of Mother Teresa Pretty darn good! Fry in heck, gay man! 4 stars
5/16/02 Gerox Hooha! Janeane ownz me. 4 stars
11/03/01 Andrew Carden A Few Very Funny Scenes Are Overblowed With Special Effects. Stiller Looks Terrible. 3 stars
10/04/01 Monday Morning Do the HBS reviewers get paid to write all that or do they just have time to burn? 5 stars
10/03/01 Butterbean Stiller is corny, like always, but this movie put a smile on my face 3 stars
8/16/01 Dakamus Janeane Garafalo = Sexiest woman alive. 5 stars
8/07/01 Kasey Anderson I had to keep watching it over & over. WOW! 5 stars
3/02/01 dave funnier than I expected. Loved Jeanene. 5 stars
1/29/01 Jared Barber The best movie ever. Funny, and creative. 5 stars
4/20/00 Sergio Allen It really really Sucked I wanted my money back I almost walked out thats how much it sucked 1 stars
4/07/00 SID Why do they have superpowers at the end? Doesn't that contradict the whole movie? 4 stars
4/01/00 Mr Happy This movie was horrible shit. Not funny unless you from Newyork. 1 stars
3/29/00 Pat Spline is so funny 5 stars
3/08/00 David Rogers Pretty funny but it could have been better. 4 stars
3/06/00 Kyle Broflovski Gut-busting hilarious, with shades of The Thing in one particular scene...:-) 5 stars
2/08/00 Joel Harwood CLARE FORLANI IS Hot so 5 stars for her but the movie sux big time 2 stars
1/30/00 Steve Total unadulterated boring crap 1 stars
1/26/00 Katherine Hughes Humerous and enjoyable 4 stars
1/23/00 Kevin Cho At least 100 to the 10th power better than I thought it would be. U catch PW Herms in it?! 5 stars
1/23/00 Quintas Brilliant, hilarious, see it. 5 stars
10/14/99 Sara Phillips 5 stars
10/08/99 Theresa Wonderful, Hilarious! Among the best were Azaria, Macy, Garofolo, and Stiller 5 stars
9/27/99 Weird Andy Like sex with an ex-girlfriend,fun at the time, but ultimately a cheapening experience. 3 stars
9/14/99 Ratso Good job, they took a great cast and idea and made a piece of shit! 1 stars
9/04/99 Andel Crodo A disappointment if you expect a superhero movie, but a thrill if you expect a goof on them 4 stars
9/02/99 PhilmPhreak It was pretty cool - check it out 4 stars
8/27/99 Ah Dooey Okay for this type of movie. The characters were funny. 3 stars
8/22/99 Daelic I laughed. I groaned. Not great, but it was good fun. 4 stars
8/19/99 Admiral Crunch hey, at least it kicked Power Rangers in the butt 3 stars
8/19/99 Nessus Not as good as the old Tick comics, but pretty funny in spots. 4 stars
8/19/99 Geoff Unique. Watchable. Fun. A decent escape for 2 hours. 4 stars
8/18/99 KK I fell asleep halfway into it. Not even worth the price of a rental. 1 stars
8/17/99 Obi Wan Movie sucked! All funny scenes can be seen on the trailer! 2 stars
8/16/99 Temper One of the most halarious and wicked movies that I've seen in a few years! 5 stars
8/15/99 Mark Levin Hilarious send-up of formulaic comic-book superhero genre. 5 stars
8/15/99 Cage Against The Machine I was definately disappointed. 2 stars
8/14/99 jen Can't remember the last time I thought about walking out before the end credits... 1 stars
8/13/99 Mike Snell Laughed my ass off 4 stars
8/13/99 Roman has its moments 3 stars
8/12/99 PurityJustBegs this film is saturated with wonderful potential, but that is lost in time-weary cliches 3 stars
8/12/99 Michael Hodgman This movie is frickin great 5 stars
8/11/99 Cherry Very funny movie! 5 stars
8/11/99 kirk uhhh something to do for fun 3 stars
8/11/99 Michael Grimm if you like campy humor this movie is for you 4 stars
8/10/99 jenn "Blu Smrf" what a great movie, that is fun for both adults and kids alike 5 stars
8/10/99 Jo Jo, The Idiot Circus Boy The only thing that kept me from falling asleep was trying to imagine Garofalo nekked. 1 stars
8/10/99 Laz lighten up folks.this is a fun,hip ride.much better than expected. 5 stars
8/10/99 jvt Stiller was the only worthwhile character, a huge let down 2 stars
8/10/99 elfpunkt Paul Ruebens getting leghumped by a skunk was funny. The movie was not. 1 stars
8/10/99 Z it's funny, laugh! 5 stars
7/28/99 David Gilmour Reminiscent of the first two Batman movies and Bukaroo Bonzai. 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  06-Aug-1999 (PG-13)

UK
  N/A

Australia
  13-Jan-2000 (PG)




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