Written by: Barry Fanaro & Robert Gordon, based on a story by Gordon, which was in turn based on the comic book by Lowell Cunningham
Directed by: Barry Sonnenfeld
Starring: Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones, Lara Flynn Boyle, Rip Torn, Johnny Knoxville
My Advice: Rent it.
It’s been five years since we last saw the intrepid members of the Men in Black. Agent Jay (Smith) has apparently been going through partners like you or I would go through toothbrushes. It’s only when a roaming galactic menace known as Serleena (Boyle) comes back to Earth looking for something called The Light of Zartha which supposedly was sent off-planet twenty-five years earlier, Jay realizes he’s in over his head. Why? Because the only one who knows what happened to this Light is Kay (Jones), his partner who “retired” in the last film. So Jay has to go nab Kay, get him back in the suit, and figure out what’s going on with the Light, because for some reason that’s never really explained, it’s going to destroy the planet at midnight.
The cast do as well as they can–but the material just isn’t up to par, so almost everyone seems to be phoning it in, with the possible exception of Knoxville, whose two-headed alien stooge is so forgettable I keep having to remind myself he was actually in the film. There is a brief moment shared between Jones and half-baked-love-interest-of-Jay Rosario Dawson (half-baked yes, but not her fault, just bad writing) towards the end that feels pasted in due to the anti-climactic climax going on all around them.
I wish I could provide a litany of all the things that went wrong with this film but unfortunately for those of you who do want to make the trek and see it, I don’t want to spoil what few surprises there are. All I can tell you is that despite what little there is in the way of big-screen-necessary effects, there’s no reason not to wait and catch it from your couch. The box office will be good enough that a MIB3 will be desired by the studio, but let’s hope that some fresh blood is brought in to rescue this poor, pathetic franchise.