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Spy Kids

Year: 2001
Director: Robert Rodriguez
Writer: Robert Rodriguez
Cast: Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino, Alexa Vega, Daryl Sabara, Alan Cumming, Teri Hatcher, Richard 'Cheech' Marin, Robert Patrick, Danny Trejo, George Clooney
Don't see it without being appropriately forewarned - it's not just a movie about kids, it's kids' movie. If you realise that and don't mind, then see it. It was a horrible shock to see the director of El Mariachi, Desperado and From Dusk Till Dawn playing with teletubbies, thinking he can get away with budget rate special effects or write such drivel dialogue.

The kids (the cute Vega and the ineffectual Sabara) of two spies (Banderas and Gugino) have to rescue them from being held hostage in the castle home of a Bond-esque madman (Cumming, who inexplicably turns good halfway through) intent on producing super weapons and... broadcasting a kids TV show (?). The link between the two is an incomprehensible as most other things in the story as a coherent plot and a tangible identity are thrown out the window for unreserved silliness - which is fine, Rodriguez was obviously making a movie directed at children who would only respond to the colour and texture. But don't expect anything like his earlier efforts in any genre.

As entertaining as reading a baby book explaining the alphabet one page at a time. The Rodriguez/Tarantino casting portfolio of Marin, Clooney and Trejo are all here and must have been faintly embarrassed after playing hard nosed, gutter-mouthed killers for so long.

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