Melissa McCarthy stuns: Melissa McCarthy Own Design
Published: June 2, 2015
Melissa McCarthy stuns: Melissa McCarthy Own Design, Spy spoofs are almost as common as the films they send up and are notoriously variable in quality. And it is not as though this film’s painfully generic title is doing much to sell it.
For those willing to look beyond the cover, there’s a giggle-filled treat in store.
Spy reunites director Paul Feig and star Melissa McCarthy.
With Bridesmaids and buddy cop flick The Heat they have already transformed two other tired genres to hilarious effect with strong female characters and dazzling scripts.
Here they do the same with the spy spoof and it is arguably their best and funniest effort to date.
McCarthy plays Susan Cooper, a clumsy cake-baking analyst who everyone assumes is the kind of woman to own cats and works in the basement at the CIA supporting Jude Law’s suave agent Bradley Fine.
When the identity of the organisation’s agents is compromised, Susan has to go undercover to find a nuclear bomb that’s being sold by Rose Byrne’s baddie Raina Boyanov.
It’s fairly familiar ground and the set-ups will ring a bell too – unglamorous and embarrassing cover stories, funny gadgets (weapons disguised as haemorrhoid wipes and stool softener), casino faux pas – but that’s kind of the point.
For the most part, Spy is just more inventive and does them funnier.
The cracking lines come at a furious pace throughout with several laugh out loud moments and some really vicious put-downs that will leave you open-mouthed.
Just like with Bridesmaids and The Heat, Feig’s script is relentless.
And just like with Bridesmaids and The Heat, it’s anchored by strong performances.
McCarthy doesn’t put a foot wrong – she’s believably lovable and useless early in the film as well as convincingly bad ass later on.
In another actor, it is easy to imagine a scenario where at least one of those requirements falters.
She is also hilarious.
Back up comes from a strong ensemble cast. Rose Byrne (also Bridesmaids) is wonderfully hateable as the spoilt villain and Miranda Hart is a perfect fit (as another version of her sitcom self) as Susan’s best friend, Nancy.
South east London provides two of the male leads: Blackheath’s Jude Law is the super-smooth Fine while Sydenham’s Jason Statham is perpetually pissed off but dim agent Rick Ford, who will not believe the Government doesn’t have access to a ‘Face Off machine’.
Statham has always been able to deliver witty quip during his trademark action exploits but it is still a little surprising just how capable he is at full-blown comedy. He is a stand-out in a strong film – mashing up his hard man persona with Jay from the Inbetweeners to preposterous and delightful effect.
As is the deal with spoofs, not much of Spy’s plot will surprise you but the set-pieces are inventive, the script is super funny and the performances totally committed. It’s a film you’ll want to see again.
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