Immediately before I went to see Get Smart, I was watching several episodes of The Office on DVD. It was completely unintentional to spend almost the entire day watching Steve Carell; I’m just a huge fan of The Office. So naturally, during the entire movie I had to refrain from adding “that’s what she said” to half of the lines delivered.
When I first saw the trailer for Get Smart that simply showed Steve Carell unable to get out of a telephone booth I immediately knew that it would be at the top of my must see summer movie list. But then talks of multiple reshoots had me a bit worried. Remaking a classic TV show into a film is a slippery slope (let us all remember The Dukes of Hazard), and the rumor mill was casting some serious doubt on the flick.
The movie revolves around Maxwell Smart (Carell) an analyst working for the secret government agency CONTROL who dreams of becoming a field agent. When the criminal organization KAOS discovers the secret identity of every CONTROL agent, Smart is paired up with a reluctant Agent 99 (Anne Hathaway) to stop the evil plans of KAOS leader Siegfried (Terrance Stamp). What exactly those plans are, we are a bit fuzzy on; there seems to be no real plot until about halfway through the film.
Luckily, Get Smart has an awesome cast that carries the film even when the plot isn’t all that stellar. Steve Carell proves once again that while he can be over the top like many of his peers, he is also a master at dead panned, straight faced humor. He combines the naïveté of Michael Scott from The Office with the dopey eyed geekiness of Andy from The 40 Year Old Virgin The secret to his success in the film is while he was inspired by the television show, he puts his own spin on Maxwell Smart, making him just a loveable but slightly more competent. It also doesn’t hurt that his chemistry and banter with Anne Hathaway is awesome, even during the slow parts of the movie. Sure, most of the jokes and ouch inducing moments are pretty predictable, but they are still enjoyable.
While Get Smart will never be as good as the original (nothing ever is) it keeps you laughing and entertained.
The Upside: Steve Carell is hilarious as always, Dwayne Johnson staples paper to people’s foreheads, and Anne Hathaway is kind of a bad ass.
The Downside: The first half of the movie really doesn’t seem to have much of a plot going on.
On the Side: Did anyone else notice that the evil lair of KAOS looked a lot like that of Dr. Evil in Austin Powers?