Saturday, 26 September 2020
Get Smart
Written by Sandra Fitzpatrick   
Thursday, 26 June 2008 00:00

ThumbnailWith the slew of bad television remakes out there, it’s good to know that Hollywood can still occasionally get something right. After resigning myself to the expectation that all of the funny parts of Get Smart would have been in the preview, I was pleasantly surprised to find that I was wrong and that the movie was filled with laugh-worthy moments that had me smiling from beginning to end. This light-hearted comedy was exactly what I hoped it would be.

Steve Carell is an inspired choice to play Maxwell Smart. He is brilliant at deadpan humor and injects charisma into characters that often take themselves too seriously. Of course his role in The Office is a prime example, but Smart is a little different. Having gotten top marks on his field training exam to become a spy, Smart actually is good at what he does. This guy isn’t just some idiot who gets handed a gun. It is the circumstances he finds himself in, and often the backfiring gadgets that cause him to blunder. In fact, you could say that Carrell’s version of Smart is a more down-to-earth, realistic version of James Bond. He screws up royally and then just makes the most of it.

Smart works an espionage agency called CONTROL that monitors terrorist activity for the US Government. He’s an analyst but what he really wants is to get his hands dirty as a field agent. He finally gets his chance when the enemy organization KAOS launches an attack on CONTROL leaving only a few agents to fight back. Smart is promoted and partnered with the experienced and beautiful Agent 99 (Anne Hatheway), who is a little peeved at having to look after the new guy on his first mission. To make matters worse he insists on taking the lead, despite his inexperience.

ThumbnailSome nice supporting players here include Dwayne Johnson (aka The Rock) as the arrogant Agent 23. He does a great job flashing his pearly whites and strutting around as the ultimate secret agent and he really does have a flair for comedy acting. Alan Arkin and Terrance Stamp play the leaders of each agency and have fun with the limited roles they are given. Watch for a hilarious cameo from Bill Murray as Agent 13 – just look for the guy in the tree!

Get Smart takes advantage of all the classic spy movie moments and turns them into gags without feeling like we’ve seen it all before. Classic skydiving stunts, a laser security system, high speed chases – all of them feel fresh, funny and yes, even exciting. What I liked is that the movie doesn’t “stop” for a funny moment, but the comedy is woven right into the story. The right balance of action and comedy is hard to achieve, but they get it all just right.

I had a great time watching this movie and it is definitely a fun summer flick. Despite a glitch in the film reel that took ten-minutes to fix, the entire crowd seemed to have had fun and left with smiles on their faces. Avoidance of an angry mob indicates that this is a film worth seeing if you want to relax and have a good time.