With a 54% rating from Rotten Tomatoes, it’s safe to say Austin Powers in Goldmember isn’t the most “shagadelic” film in the groovy franchise. But we know you love it anyway for its crass yucks, over-the-top characters (Fat Bastard!) and general Beyoncé-ness. With IFC and Rotten Tomatoes teaming up to celebrate “rotten” movies that we can’t help but love, we thought we’d share some reasons why Austin Powers in Goldmember hits our guilty pleasure sweet spot.
5. Michael Caine Gets Groovy.
Following in the footsteps of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, cowriter/star Mike Myers took a third Austin entry as an excuse to finally meet the man who sired this “International Man of Mystery.” And who else could it have been than legendary thespian Michael Caine, who helped inspire the part with his performance as Harry Palmer in The Ipcress File? In fact, after finding out that Austin’s glasses were reproductions of the ones he wore as Harry, Caine dusted off the original pair for his turn as Nigel Powers.
4. Oh, Those Cameos!
Any franchise that goes on too long can start to do some serious navel gazing. By the time this third entry rolled around, what was once a light romp through ’60s spy psychedelia had become a self-reverential cluster, er, fluff. Still, while obsessing over the mythology of such a silly franchise, and introducing ridiculous twists like Austin and Dr. Evil being brothers, may have been a bit much, at least we got a celebrity-filled spoof of the franchise with cameos by everyone from Tom Cruise (Austin Powers) to John Travolta (Goldmember) and Kevin Spacey (Dr. Evil).
3. A New Villain Who Goes for the Gold!
As a big bad, Goldmember is nowhere near as memorable as Dr. Evil. But, then again, how could he be? With his Lorne Michaels-inspired speaking patterns, and inability to understand inflation, the son of a a relentlessly self-improving boulangerie owner from Belgium was one of the all-time great movie villains. Still, we have to respect Myers for taking a chance here, and trying something new. Goldmember may not be the best bad guy from the series, but with his thick Dutch accent and penchant for eating his own skin flakes, he still had something to offer.
2. Musical Numbers Galore!
One of the best things about Goldmember is that it’s something of a musical at heart. With three songs — a jazzy opening dance number, a soulful introduction sung by Foxxy Cleopatra (Beyoncé Knowles), and a ridiculous rap from Dr. Evil and Mini-Me — this triquel carves out its own niche in the franchise by putting a beat to it.
1. Scott Aukerman is in it! Oh, also Beyonce.
Look, we love Mrs. Carter as much as the next Beyhive member, but we’d be remiss if we didn’t point out that Comedy Bang! Bang!‘s own Scott Aukerman turns up as Young Nigel in a blink-and-you’ll-miss it cameo. As Shag Powersman himself said while reflecting on his storied career, “Who knew being Michael Caine’s body double in Austin Powers 3 was in my future?”
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