Fine (if pretty dumb) British slapstick for tweens.
Based on 22 reviews
Based on 27 reviews
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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Johnny English is a slapstick comedy with a few strong words ("ass") and some bathroom jokes . Some spy adventure peril including guns, but no blood or intense violence. Kids not familiar with the long-term French-English political and cultural clashes may be confused by the animosity between the French and English characters.
Some course language and adult content
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An unnecessary conversation made this movie for older kids
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What's the Story?
Rowan Atkinson plays JOHNNY ENGLISH, a low-level bureaucrat in England's spy service who dreams of being a field agent. When all of the agents are wiped out through his ineptitude, he gets his chance. England's crown jewels have been stolen by French zillionaire Pascal Sauvage (John Malkovich), who plans to take over England and turn it into a prison facility. It's up to Johnny English, his sidekick Bough (pronounced "Boff") and woman of mystery (Natalie Imbruglia) to save the day.
Is It Any Good?
The spy parts aren't exciting enough and the funny parts aren't funny enough, but the overall effect is mildly amusing. Johnny English as mild spy parody has nothing new, though Rowan Atkinson ("Mr. Bean") is a gifted comedian who manages to wring some new laughs with material that has already been fully explored in movies from Our Man Flint and Dean Martin's Matt Helm movies to Spy Hard, and Mike Myers' Austin Powers series.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about how comedy can diffuse violence. How would Johnny English's violence have affected you differently if it wasn't portrayed humorously?
What kind of character is Johnny English? Is he a hero?
- In theaters: July 18, 2003
- On DVD or streaming: January 13, 2004
- Cast: John Malkovich, Natalie Imbruglia, Rowan Atkinson
- Director: Peter Howitt
- Studio: Universal Pictures
- Genre: Comedy
- Topics: Adventures
- Run time: 88 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG
- MPAA explanation: comic nudity, some crude humor and language
- Last updated: February 3, 2023
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