Riding high off the wave of Spy Who Shagged Me, Austin Powers returns in Goldmember, and for me it’s easily the weakest in the trilogy. I still enjoy it, but it’s nowhere on the level of the first two. Why is that?
In short, it relies on a lot of the same stuff as the first two movies. Austin goes back in time. We get a screen gag. There’s a sequence where the next cut finishes the previous one’s sentence (including Ozzy Osbourne commenting on how it’s been done already). He has trouble understanding a lady’s name (or in this case twins’ names) that sounds naughty. Most of it we’ve seen before, and it feels tired.
Where the film does excel is where it does something new and different. The film within a film sequence with the celebrity casting is GOLD. Michael Caine is a good addition. Scott’s arc is great and sets us up very well for the sequel that never happened. I just wish that this film kept pushing it with the new instead of relying so much on the old. That’s prolly what killed the franchise’s momentum. Occasionally there are whispers of a revival and I hope it does come back. I’m sure by now they’ve had plenty of time to come up with plenty new