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Looking for a way out of their mundane government jobs, Austin Millbarge and Emmett Fitz-Hume take the entrance exam for a CIA espionage program. Immediately chosen to take part in a top-secret mission in the Middle East, they think they are U.S. spies, but actually they are decoys for Nuclear War.
Director John Landis likes to build elaborate cinematic toys, but this one is a comic clinker.
August 21, 2004
Nolan's Pop Culture Review
Often funny film boasts no less then 10 film directors on screen in small roles. Stick around for the Paul McCartney penned title song.
November 11, 2004
[An] irritating comedy in which Aykroyd and Chase play officials who are sent on a secret mission as decoys whilst the real spies do their work. Their inadequacy is matched by a jokey script of dubious morals and taste.
Landis never bothers to account for the friendship that springs up spontaneously between these two antipathetic types, but then he never bothers to account for anything in this loose progression of recycled Abbott and Costello riffs.
There are seeds of something funny in the film's beginning and in its premise, but they are soon dissipated by so little sustained wit, and so much scenery.
May 20, 2003
Landis' direction is indulgent, to say the least, with big landscapes, big crashes, big hardware, and big gags filling the screen. What he forgets is character development, that all-important factor that must exist for comedy to work well.