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Mystery Men

Being that I often don a caped costume and head out into the night I readily identified with the main characters in Mystery Men. Of course they do it to fight crime but there's no point getting into the little details is there?

Ben Stiller, William H. Macy and Hank Azaria play three wannabe superheroes who live in the shadow of Champion City's number one superman - Captain Amazing (Greg Kinnear). These misfits are called upon to save the city when Captain Amazing is kidnapped and some big giant weapon is about to be turned on the city by evil Geoffrey Rush.

Of course their superpowers, or lack thereof, are the main joke of the movie. Stiller plays Mr. Furious who basically just gets mad and shouts a lot. Macy is The Shoveller who is good with a shovel and Hank Azaria is the Blue Raja, a cutlery throwing American with an adopted British accent. They join up with Pee Wee Herman as The Spleen, Janeane Garofalo as The Bowler and the skinny kid from Keenan and Kel as Invisible Boy who incidentally can only turn invisible if nobody is looking at him.

They're taught by the terribly mysterious Sphinx who spouts enigmatic phrases - "He who questions training only trains himself at asking questions" - until finally they're ready to strike down evil with the sword of teamwork and the hammer of not bickering.

While there are some laugh out loud moments, Stiller's fits of rage and mixed metaphors especially, the whole film is a bit under whelming. Maybe it's the script, it does wander a bit but Mystery Men could have been a lot better. Rent it for a light laugh but don't expect to remember much of it afterwards.

Now - where's my cape and sequined boots?

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