Americans have made the "Austin Powers" movies their James Bond spoof of choice, but in "Johnny English" the British strike back with native dry-wit buffoon Rowan Atkinson starring as a bumblingly inept secret agent called up from desk duty when his own ineffectual security gets all the country's top spies killed by a single bomb.
Atkinson's career as a side-splitter pinnacled in the 1980s with a brilliantly acid-tongued historical comedy on the BBC called "Black Adder" (which can still be seen on many rogue PBS stations). He's probably best known this side of the pond for his obnoxious "Mr. Bean" TV series or as the nervous rookie minister in "Four Weddings and a Funeral."
In "Johnny English" he plays a third-tier intelligence operative with delusions of grandeur and an amusingly paper-thin facade of poise, which along with the over-pronounced features of his rubbery face is just funny enough to sustain the snickers between out-loud laughs in this hit-and-miss comedy.
Continue reading: Johnny English Review