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Austin Powers in Goldmember (2002)

tomatometer

54

Average Rating: 5.8/10
Reviews Counted: 183
Fresh: 99 | Rotten: 84

While the narrative structure is messy and doesn't make much sense, the third installment of the Austin Powers franchise contains enough inspired bits to entertain.

54

Average Rating: 5.7/10
Critic Reviews: 39
Fresh: 21 | Rotten: 18

While the narrative structure is messy and doesn't make much sense, the third installment of the Austin Powers franchise contains enough inspired bits to entertain.

audience

43

liked it
Average Rating: 3/5
User Ratings: 32,924,217

My Rating

Movie Info

Mike Myers' phenomenally successful spy spoof gains a few more characters, a slew of celebrity cameos, and even more free-associative laughs in this third installment of the popular franchise. Austin Powers in Goldmember continues the exploits of the swinging-'60s leftover, who, as the film opens, is busy critiquing a big-budget Hollywood production of his life story, replete with a 20-million-dollar star in the lead role and a slew of John Woo-style action scenes. But not far from the

PG-13,

Comedy

Michael McCullers, Mike Myers

Dec 3, 2002

$213.1M

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All Critics (195) | Top Critics (42) | Fresh (99) | Rotten (84) | DVD (42)

The third installment in the series of super-spy spoofs, it's handcuffed by the ever-increasing load of baggage it carries.

November 6, 2002 Full Review Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic IconTop Critic

I think this is the funniest of the three movies and I liked the first two.

July 31, 2002 Full Review Source: Ebert & Roeper | Comments (3)
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's an ode to indecent joy.

July 27, 2002 Full Review Source: Slate
Slate
Top Critic IconTop Critic

One-ups the Austin Powers sequel that came before it.

July 26, 2002 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The level of inventiveness remains high.

July 26, 2002 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Powers team has fashioned a comedy with more laughs than many, no question. But this time there's some mold on the gold.

July 26, 2002 Full Review Source: USA Today
USA Today
Top Critic IconTop Critic

What can we say? See the movie first, then decide.

December 22, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

What more could one want from a third Austin Powers movie that you didn't get from two? With only so much Bond baiting to be done, Mike Myers trains his soft satire on himself for something that feels somewhat self-loathing, but still riotously funny.

September 25, 2010 Full Review Source: Suite101.com
Suite101.com

I expected laughs and instead got a sad spectacle of recycled jokes and lame running gags.

April 29, 2009 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed
Cinema Crazed

...things went from mediocre to worse in this entry.

November 30, 2008 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

Thank God for Fat Bastard.

September 13, 2007 Full Review Source: Bangor Daily News (Maine)
Bangor Daily News (Maine)

Most of it is rehash, and smug rehash at that.

July 23, 2007 Full Review Source: eFilmCritic.com
eFilmCritic.com

Myers and Roach are running dangerously close to empty as far as new and genuinely funny ideas, and they would be best off quitting before they fall any farther behind.

January 6, 2004 Full Review Source: TheMovieReport.com
TheMovieReport.com

The first five minutes of this film rate as perhaps the best film opening ever... they're worth the price of admission alone, and so we need say no more.

October 7, 2003 Full Review Source: EDGE Boston | Comments (2)
EDGE Boston

Perhaps not as original as the first two movies, Goldmember is still fun and funny.

September 27, 2003 Full Review Source: Three Movie Buffs
Three Movie Buffs

...[the film is] dominated by jokes that aren't terribly funny and abandons the more absurd nature of the first film's comedy.

August 1, 2003 Full Review Source: Reel Film Reviews
Reel Film Reviews

Easily as effective as its two previous installments, once again utilizing the finest in pee/fart/poop/sex jokes, naughty juxtaposition of everyday objects, and Bond-spoof genius that only Meyers and Roach can deliver.

February 8, 2003 Full Review Source: Film Quips Online
Film Quips Online

If this series has any more life left in it, Myers and Roach have to do a major rethink.

January 23, 2003 Full Review Source: RTE Interactive (Dublin, Ireland)

A horrible conclusion to a previously entertaining series.

January 8, 2003 Full Review Source: Cinema Sight
Cinema Sight

If you thought the first and second in the series were groovy, you're going to love the third.

December 8, 2002 Full Review Source: Film Threat
Film Threat

I paid $3 to see this movie. That is about $2 too much.

November 6, 2002 Full Review Source: Laramie Movie Scope | Comment (1)
Laramie Movie Scope

There is no excuse for Austin Powers. There, I've said it. Fire at will.

October 21, 2002 Full Review Source: San Diego Metropolitan
San Diego Metropolitan

Austin Powers in Goldmember may be a hash (and a rehash), but it was cooked with laughing gas.

October 15, 2002 Full Review Source: Cincinnati Enquirer
Cincinnati Enquirer

Myers never knows when to let a gag die; thus, we're subjected to one mind-numbingly lengthy riff on poo and pee jokes after another.

September 30, 2002
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)

Era mais engraçado quando [Mike] Myers ria dos outros, e não de si mesmo.

September 18, 2002 Full Review Source: Cinema em Cena
Cinema em Cena

Audience Reviews for Austin Powers in Goldmember

The last-ditch-effort with celebrity cameos is cheap but still hilarious. I also like the role reversals of Scott Evil and Mini-Me. Beyonce plays the blaxpoitation heroine trope with sass and gusto.
December 22, 2013
aliceinpunderland

Super Reviewer

and Dr. Evil. Myers again plays shagadelic secret agent Austin Powers, his arch-nemesis Dr. Evil and horrible henchman Fat Bastard, and now also a new bad guy, the Dutch hedonist Goldmember. I found this movie hilarious and outrageous! It had a lot of crude humor, like Austin hiding behind Mr. Roboto's fountain. But there was also a good amount of self-parody. The best scenes included Dr. Evil's prison rap video, and the suggestive subtitles in Mr. Roboto's office. The several cameos were also enjoyable, especially Ozzy Osbourne pointing out the joke carried over from "The Spy Who Shagged Me." The scene with Godzilla and its copyright was a relevant joke, considering the MPAA's temporary ban on the use of the title "Goldmember." I did have a complaint about the continuity. The difference in Austin Powers' trademark "choppers" was noticeable. And although I'd have liked an explanation for the absence of Felicity Shagwell, I'm glad she was not revealed in the movie as a fembot! Anyway, with this third installment, Austin Powers goes out with a bang! 3 1/2 stars 12-21-02
June 4, 2013
bbcfloridabound
Bruce Bruce

Super Reviewer

Considering the sharp decline in quality between the first and second Austin Powers films, you'd be more than forgiven for going into Goldmember with the lowest possible expectations. Not only are good threequels genuinely rare, but comedy sequels are often driven by a need to milk the original jokes for as long as possible, rather than bring in anything new to move the characters forward.

For the most part, our expectations are justified: Austin Powers in Goldmember is a really bad comedy which only cements our disappointment at how far the series has fallen since International Man of Mystery. It is in essence a 90-minute exercise in wringing every last drop of humour out from the characters, the problem being that after The Spy Who Shagged Me, there wasn't anything left. But in spite of everything, it is a very marginal improvement on its predecessor, if only because it isn't quite as wretchedly mean-spirited.

One of the big debates that film fans often have is about self-awareness. If a bad film knows that it's bad, is that better or worse than a film which isn't aware of how terrible it is? In the past I've defended films such as Flash Gordon which triumphantly embrace their ridiculous elements. I've even stuck up for George Lucas (hard as that may be), arguing that he isn't aware of how terrifyingly idiotic he is, and that therefore even the worst moments of the Star Wars prequels aren't as painful as the worst excesses of Michael Bay.

I raise this question because Goldmember stakes a lot of its appeal on self-parody. It's as though Jay Roach and Mike Myers were aware of how little there was left in the tank with this series, and tried to make up for it by taking the piss out of themselves. The whole opening sequence re-imagines the series as if it was a Hollywood blockbuster, with Tom Cruise doing one of his early self-deprecating cameos as the big-screen Austin. The whole film is something of a cameo-fest, with Kevin Spacey, Danny DeVito and even John Travolta turning up - and in this early section, it's kind of funny.

The problem, however, is that Goldmember never really commits to the self-parody. Sometimes it wants to follow through with the self-deprecation, making jokes about shoddy wire work and the series' continuity. But other times it pulls back from this and wants to be as self-contained as the other films, mining the same tired jokes with diminishing returns and bot a hint of irony. Put simply, if you want to be self-aware, you have to be self-aware all the time, and just saying something's a self-parody doesn't work if you're not consciously trying to break free from the jokes that you're parodying.

There is even an inconsistency when the film tries to match the first film and send up the Bond series. There are a few moments in which the jokes really work, the best being Michael Caine's scene with the henchman. Caine talks to the henchmen surrounding him about how generic convention means they are doomed to die, saying to one "you haven't even got a nametag" and that they may as well just give up rather than have him fight them. It's a neat little joke which reflects the jokes about henchmen in International Man of Mystery, bringing the series full circle and making us feel that some thought did go into this.

Unfortunately gags of this calibre are few and far between, and the film makes precious little effort with the rest of its Bond trappings. There's plenty of clichéd disco dancing to remind us that we're in the 1970s now, but there's no effort made to use Beyoncé's character to send up either Blaxpoitation or the Bond films that assimilated it, like Live and Let Die. Goldmember could have been an interesting synthesis of Goldfinger and Francisco Scaramanga, but he's far more disgusting than funny, ending up as just a lazy Dutch stereotype with all the old jokes about sex and drugs.

This disappointment only goes to show how by-the-numbers the series has become, and how far removed it is from the often insightful first instalment. Even when the film consciously references Bond, such as the sumo scene halfway through, there is no effort made to tie the jokes to the characters. Even at its most embarrassing and predictable, the Bond series still gave us characters with a purpose, even if that purpose was stupid or made little sense. Goldmember feels constantly in search of an author or plot, with characters wandering around wondering why they exist besides the money involved.

On top of that, the film blatantly recycles jokes from both International Man of Mystery and The Spy Who Shagged Me. We get another shadow puppet joke, something that was run into the ground in the previous film; it has one good moment involving the 'birth' of Mini-Me, but nothing else. Mini-Me himself still gets a rum deal, constantly being punched and kicked around for no real reason other than a mean-spirited belief that little people are inherently funny. Roach is so desperate for a laugh that he even cuts to clips from the first two films, and just disguising them as flashbacks doesn't distract from how cheap he's being.

What we are left with is not so much a plot as a series of sketches. Different characters wander in and out, jokes are made with varying degrees of success, and after 90 minutes, it stops. After its promising opening the film rises and falls on each scene, settling into a shapeless universe in which nothing makes sense and no attempt is made to connect any one scene to another beyond lazy exposition. I'd call this approach contempt, if the film weren't so dull that it doesn't deserve anyone getting angry about it.

What makes Goldmember so disappointing, like its predecessor, is that there are any number of moments that could have worked with a little more effort. The sub-plot about Scott turning evil could have been developed into a proper storyline, giving Austin and Dr. Evil a reason to team up and for the film to examine their similarities, a la Holmes and Moriarty. The film could have made more of Goldmember's predicament, in a variation on the 'lost mojo' plot of the second film. But the whole thing is so episodic and lazy that every time a good idea or opportunity comes along, it's either instantly shot down or swept to one side as the next attempt at a joke starts.

On top of all that, the film is racially insensitive. We can just about excuse the characterisation of Goldmember: if nothing else, the film does occasionally make him so gross that he departs from an exact stereotype of Dutch people and becomes something more bizarre. But the scene with the Japanese twins is completely crass and unacceptable, to the point that when Fat Bastard arrives on screen, we're immensely grateful. While the film isn't as overtly mean-spirited as The Spy Who Shagged Me (perhaps because Bastard has less to do in it), there is a nasty, exploitative undercurrent to it which leaves a sour taste in the mouth.

The performances in Goldmember range from the capable to the completely pointless. Michael York remains game as Basil Exposition, even if he has less to do than usual, and Michael Caine acquits himself perfectly well considering what he has to work with. Mike Myers is hit-and-miss, with Dr. Evil being enjoyable, Austin being annoying and Goldmember being... Goldmember. Elsewhere Robert Wagner is decent, Beyoncé Knowles is wooden and Seth Green isn't as funny or as convincing as he is the first two films.

Austin Powers in Goldmember is a disappointing final instalment of a franchise that should have been restricted to one film. While it marginally improves on the tone of The Spy Who Shagged Me, it remains a lazy, episodic mess that can't decide how self-aware it wants to be, or even whether it wants to have a plot or not. Myers remains a talented individual, as proven by his work in the Shrek series around the same time, but no amount of gold can make up for the fact that Goldmember is pretty pants.
January 26, 2013
Daniel Mumby
Daniel Mumby

Super Reviewer

Alright, I was proved wrong! After the second film, I thought the series really had nowhere else to go, but Director Jay Roach does it again, making yet another sequel topping the original. The gags are non-stop and the actors are relentless. Austin Powers in Goldmember is rip-roaring fun! From slapstick comedy, to actual gut splitting humour, unlike the others, I can actually watch this quite a bit more. 'The Spy Who Shagged ME' will always be my favourite out of the series, but this film really does the series justice. Even though I cannot see the future of this series progressing any further, I'm sure if they were to try, then can pull off yet another hilarious comedy. The humour is now becoming stale, so they better be careful in the fourth instalment!
December 27, 2012
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

    1. Nigel Powers: Oh my god! You're a tripod.
    – Submitted by Chuck N (12 months ago)
    1. Austin Powers: Mole!
    2. Basil Expedition: Oh, shut up!
    – Submitted by Matthew D (16 months ago)
    1. Austin Powers: Mr. Roboto is lying to us.
    2. Foxxy Cleopatra: Tell me something I don't know.
    3. Austin Powers: I open mouth kissed a horse once.
    4. Foxxy Cleopatra: Say what?
    5. Austin Powers: That's something you don't know.
    – Submitted by Matthew D (16 months ago)
    1. Goldmember (in Movie): You see Austin Powers, I love GOLD! The taste of it, the smell of, the texture...
    – Submitted by Ezekiel B (19 months ago)
    1. Dr. Evil (in Movie): How about you don't 'ladies and gentlemen, Scotty don't.'
    – Submitted by Nik M (19 months ago)
    1. Goldmember: Hey, Dr. Evil, can I paint his yoo-hoo gold? It's kind of my thing, you know.
    2. Dr. Evil: How about, no! you crazy Dutch bastard!
    – Submitted by Matthew D (20 months ago)
View all quotes (16)

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