“MIB: International is completely forgettable fluff that probably should’ve never been made.”
Men In Black: International squanders the incredible chemistry of Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson with a story that feels stuck in the late 90s. Even with the technology of today, every single special effect and set piece feels ripped from a 1999 movie. It is so stale.
The basic plot of MIB: International is that ‘M’ (Tessa Thompson) witnessed her parents get neurilized by MIB agents when she was kid after they had an alien encounter in their home. M remembers this encounter and spends her entire life trying to find the Men in Black and join their organization. When she finally joins up she gets transferred to MIB London where she teams up with “H” (Chris Hemsworth) as they try to unravel an assassination plot of an important alien while uncovering a mole within MIB London.
The plot is just as generic as it sounds. Every single twist is telegraphed from miles away to the point I leaned over to my wife at one point and said “They are dragging out this bad guy reveal way too long.” The plot bounces from one sound stage to another because other than an exterior shot of some island fortress I don’t think the cast was ever actually outside. It feels cheap. If this was the playful aesthetic they were going for then I wouldn’t complain but they clearly want this to start a new franchise and never address how bad everything looks. Even the alien effects haven’t improved since 1998’s original MIB. It just looks cheap, cheaper, and even more cheap.
In between these box checking plot points the cast is actually great. Tessa Thompson and Chris Hemsworth have such incredible chemistry that carries over from Thor: Ragnarok. Hemsworth has really just started to bank of the comedic aspect of his career and he continues that here. He gets to have a few playful moments inside an otherwise paint by number scene. Towards the end of the movie they find a pawn alien who is voiced by Kumail Nanjiani. He provides some good voice work and allows for some of the more comedic moments to breathe but once again his overall purpose and arc is hampered by a really poor story.
Ultimately, MIB: International is completely forgettable fluff that probably should’ve never been made. It proves once again that even if you have two likeable stars who do their best they cannot overcome a terrible story and poor effects. The most disappointing part is that I really think this movie could’ve worked if the script was more self aware or they leaned into the absurdity. Instead this is another useless blockbuster release in a summer full of them so far.