I Spy

November 1st, 2002


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Still of Eddie Murphy and Owen Wilson in I SpyStill of Eddie Murphy and Owen Wilson in I SpyStill of Eddie Murphy in I SpyStill of Eddie Murphy and Owen Wilson in I SpyStill of Eddie Murphy in I SpyStill of Famke Janssen in I Spy

A professional athlete has to help a U.S. government agent recover a missing jet.

Release Year: 2002

Rating: 5.2/10 (23,752 voted)

Critic's Score: 35/100

Director: Betty Thomas

Stars: Eddie Murphy, Owen Wilson, Famke Janssen

When the Switchblade, the most sophisticated prototype stealth fighter created yet, is stolen from the U.S. government, one of the United States' top spies, Alex Scott, is called to action. What he doesn't expect is to get teamed up with a cocky civilian, World Class Boxing Champion Kelly Robinson, on a dangerous top secret espionage mission. Their assignment: using equal parts skill and humor, catch Arnold Gundars, one of the world's most successful illegal arms dealers, and foil his treacherous plans for the plane.

Writers: Morton S. Fine, David Friedkin

Eddie Murphy - Kelly
Owen Wilson - Alex
Famke Janssen - Rachel
Malcolm McDowell - Gundars
Gary Cole - Carlos
Phill Lewis - Jerry
Viv Leacock - T.J.
Keith Dallas - Lunchbox
Tate Taylor - Lieutenant Percy
Lynda Boyd - Edna
Bill Mondy - McIntyre
Larry Merchant - Vegas Commentator
Sugar Ray Leonard - Vegas Commentator
Jimmy Lennon Jr. - Vegas Ring Announcer
Joe Cortez - Vegas Referee

Taglines: Attitude meets espionage


Official Website: Sony Pictures - storyline and trailers |

Release Date: 1 November 2002

Filming Locations: Buda Castle, Várkerület, Budapest, Hungary

Box Office Details

Budget: $70,000,000(estimated)

Opening Weekend: $12,752,803 (USA) (3 November 2002) (3182 Screens)

Gross: $33,105,600 (USA) (8 December 2002)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

BNS stood for the Bureau of National Security.

Continuity: When Alex and Kelly are in the sewer they are wearing their bow ties. While they are opening up to each other their ties are off, but when they emerge from the sewer the ties are back on. Taking them off makes sense, but why put them back on again and smarten themselves up *before* climbing out?

Alexander Scott: This man is Arnold Gundars, premiere arms dealer. We believe he has the switchblade.

User Review

A Decent Laugh

Rating: 5/10

I always liked Owen Wilson and Eddie Murphy, so I thought, in case the movie is worth nothing, I'd still get to see some friendly faces. For better or worse, I can say it was about what I expected.

I put this movie in two categories, and I think I placed it right: it's a decent comedy, with parts attempting to live up to an action movie. At its heart though it tries to be comedic and funny, so that's upon what it should be judged. Thankfully, you will get the chance to laugh out loud, but unfortunately not as much as you'd like to laugh out loud at a comedy. I won't even mention rolling on the floor.

The story isn't something really new, but it has quite a few humorous plot twists. The so-called funny character is Kelly, who really inflicts a fair amount of pain on his adversaries, but he is just such a nicely drawn, egocentric guy, that it actually works on a comedic level. It's always just about him, and him and then some more.

The actors have their charm but I won't really dwell on this as they are as high profile as it gets, Hollywood style, so you know what you get. Perhaps Wilson could have spiced up his game with a bit of the unexpected, but all in all he does what he does best.

I did feel a bit let down by the special effects, with some flimsy looking explosions placed here and there. However, the host city of Budapest looked really gorgeous throughout, making it well worth it's money shots.

To draw the line, the film isn't great, but it's fine enough. No brilliant ideas, or anything like that, just the usual comic stuff.