Ever since Bridesmaids in 2011, it’s been hard to ignore Melissa McCarthy’s presence in the world of comedy. If I’m honest, I thought she was very good in that film but since then, she has starred in comedies that can be found lacking in actual comedy.
Last year’s Tammy was the worst of the lot so it’s understandable to be a little cautious while heading to see one of her new films.
Spy sees McCarthy once again team up with director Paul Feig, who directed McCarthy in two of her better films; Bridesmaids and The Heat. This was a reason to be slightly optimistic.
McCarthy stars as Susan Cooper, a CIA analyst who spends all of her working days sat behind a desk. A major incident causes Cooper to volunteer to go undercover and infiltrate the dealings of an arms dealer, in order to prevent a global disaster.
Spy opens strongly with an action sequence involving Jude Law’s agent Bradley Fine and Cooper behind her desk, acting as Fine’s eyes and ears. There is one brilliant moment that would have been so much better if it hadn’t been in the trailers, a common problem in most comedies these days.
From then on in, Spy works well as a send-up to the more serious spy films out there. Think of a female James Bond with a lot less know-how and a much fouler mouth and you have Susan Cooper.
McCarthy’s performance is as loud as her previous ones however, the difference between Spy and Tammy is the writing. The script has some sense of wit to it and the jokes, while some fall flat, really do come thick and fast.
Jude Law, Rose Byrne and Miranda Hart all provide McCarthy with some stellar support but there is no doubt that the whole film is stolen by Jason Statham as bigheaded agent Rick Ford. Ford loves to brag about being the best and his lines and the way Statham delivers them had me in tears.
I never thought I would say this but, the presence of Jason Statham really does make Spy better.
If Spy does one thing, it certainly makes me a bit more optimistic about the idea of Melissa McCarthy starring in a Ghostbusters reboot, particularly if Paul Feig is directing it.