Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (1999 with Mike Myers and Heather Graham)

USA / 1999

Dir: Jay Roach
Writers: Mike Myers, Michael McCullers

Cast: Mike Myers, Heather Graham, Verne Troyer, Seth Green, Mindy Sterling

On his honeymoon night, British agent Austin Powers discovers his new bride (Liz Hurley) is a robot assassin sent by his nemesis, Dr Evil (both played by Mike Myers) but luckily he escapes death (and marriage). But, unable to make peace with his belligerent (but only quasi-evil) son Scott (Seth Green), the doctor has fashioned a clone of himself, christened Mini-Me (Verne Troyer), who will travel back with to 1969 and steal Powers’ mojo, rendering him impotent in the future.

As Austin discovers their plan he too heads back in time, enlisting the help of sexy CIA-operative Felicity Shagwell (Heather Graham). But with his virility vaporised, will Powers be able to thwart Evil’s latest attempt at world domination?

You already know the answer, but plot was never the point of Myers’ affectionate spoof sequel, exhuming Talbot Rothwell’s cast-off character names – Robin Spitz Swallows, anyone? – and Sid James’ teeth for a nation who never had the celluloid comfort blanket of the Carry-Ons. Myers’ charm and drive make even the corniest jokes palatable but his script is full of gems, most notably the Jerry Springer pastiche and an extended knob gag that press-gangs cameos from men named Woody.

Jay Roach’s empathy with his star is obvious, translating into an infectious energetic production which appears to value fun over finance and looks to have secured the director’s pension plan. He hit gold again after helming Meet The Parents, and has returned to help Austin in the record-breaking Goldmember (pushing that franchise well past $500 million in box office receipts) before reuniting with Robert De Niro for the upcoming Meet The Fokkers.

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