Logline: A New York City police officer joins a secret organization that monitors extraterrestrial life on Earth.
Nostalgia plays a big part in the way we view movies. Sometimes, we revisit films that we loved from our childhood only to find they do not hold up as well as we remember them. Then, we find others that are just as great, if not better, than we remember. Men in Black is one such film for me. A great summer blockbuster, the film is a lot of fun and rests on the shoulders of its two prominent stars, Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith. The duo have great chemistry onscreen and comedic quips.
Clocking in at a slim ninety-eight minutes, Men in Black is a fast paced ride that never lets up and fuses various genres, such as science fiction, comedy, and action. Jones and Smith are both excellent, playing off one another effortlessly. This is the film that really catapulted Smith to stardom and his youthful exuberance gives the film a great energy.
The special effects are impressive and still hold up today. The legendary Rick Baker and Industrial Light & Magic provide the amazing creature and makeup effects. There are a plethora of characters, most of which only appear onscreen for a few minutes and yet, make an indelible impression. The score, composed by Danny Elfman, is great. The song “Men in Black” was Will Smith’s first solo single following his work with DJ Jazzy Jeff and it is a fun track.
I love Men in Black and I’m not afraid to admit it. It is a fun big budget spectacle that holds up remarkably well. Nostalgia definitely plays into my adoration for this film but regardless, it is a movie that works on every level. Men in Black is a true 90s classic.
Rating (out of ****): ****