Friendships are put to the test in this wildly over-the-top, preposterously elaborate and somewhat tiresome spy comedy.
Forget the secret agent in the title, The Spy Who Dumped Me is actually all about two female besties Audrey (Mila Kunis) and Morgan (Kate McKinnon), and they’re the best reason to sit through this overlong and tonally awry effort crammed full of inane crudity and sheer silliness.
Drew (Justin Theroux) is the CIA operative in question, and he’s introduced in a violent opening sequence in Lithuania before we cut to LA native Audrey’s glum birthday. It seems that her boyfriend Drew dumped her via text, and Morgan, in standard McKinnon style, is looning around doing all sorts of dopey stuff to cheer her up.
Neither knows that Drew is actually a spy, but they cotton on quickly when a series of baddies come for him, and then them. Soon they’re on the run, and being pursued by a pair of MI6 agents (Sam Heughan and Hasan Minhaj), an increasingly psycho assassin (Ivanna Sakhno) and the usual army of leather-bound, gun-toting, knife-flashing stunt-people on motorbikes. Fleeing through Vienna, Prague, Amsterdam, Paris and Berlin (quite how doesn’t bear close scrutiny), Audrey and Morgan knock off lots of iffy gags as the corpses pile up, and offer jokes that hint at a #MeToo feminist subtext.
If that’s right, then it really should be better, funnier and less ludicrous, as glimmers of dark satire (references to Edward Snowden abound) rub shoulders with the usual giggles about vomit, diarrhea and circumcision that seem baked into most major studio comedies these days.
Still, Kunis and McKinnon are always entertaining, and certainly look like they’re having fun. At the very least, let’s hope they had a nice (if hugely expensive) European holiday.
The Spy Who Dumped Me is in cinemas from Thursday August 9