‘Johnny English Strikes Again’ not worth the money

November 27, 2018 — by Shreya Katkere

Rowan Atkinson has made a comeback to the entertainment industry playing Johnny English in the film “Johnny English Strikes Again,” an action comedy directed by David Kerr. It was released on Oct. 26.

“Johnny English Strikes Again” starts when a cyberattack gives away the identities of undercover agents in an organization called MI7 in England. English, now retired, is the secret agent society’s only hope. He agrees to help and dives straight into the mission to find the hacker who gave away the identities of the agents.

There are three movies in the “Johnny English” series, all featuring Atkinson. The first came out 15 years ago and did well, earning $28 million in the U.S. However, the second movie in the series, “Johnny English Reborn,” earned a mere $8 million. Interest in “Johnny English” clearly declined, which made the third movie, “Johnny English Strikes Again,” seem even more redundant and pointless.  

“Johnny English Strikes Again” is not doing that well in the U.S., having earned only $1.6 million so far. Overseas, however, “Johnny English Strikes Again” has made over $100 million, substantially better than any of the other “Johnny English” movies.

I had high expectations for “Johnny English Strikes Again” because of Atkinson’s popularity stemming from his hilarious past role as Mr. Bean in the 1990 to 1995 television series “Mr. Bean” and the 2007 movie “Mr. Bean’s Holiday.”

People can always count on an episode of “Mr. Bean” to cheer them up if they are having a bad day, but the same cannot be said for “Johnny English Strikes Again.”

Unlike the “Mr. Bean” series, “Johnny English Strikes Again” is predictable and unimaginative. Even though Atkinson acts in both movies, watching Atkinson play Johnny English is much less entertaining than watching Atkinson play Mr. Bean.

The plot of “Johnny English” is not entertaining and the movie has multiple parts that do not make sense. For example, Johnny is portrayed as inept for the most of the movie, yet he magically gets smarter in climactic scenes, which allows him to solve arising problems.

As critic Dana Schwartz writes on Rotten Tomatoes, “every gag in this movie has already been done before, and better, presumably by one or both of the earlier Johnny English films.”

My advice: Avoid “Johnny English.” If Atkinson wants to act in a film again, he should just return to his role as Mr. Bean.