Movie Review by Vivienne Messenger
Starring: Frankie Muniz, Anthony Anderson, Hannah Spearritt, Cynthia Stevenson
Director: Kevin Allen
The talented Frankie Muniz is back is this follow-up to AGENT CODY BANKS with a lovely new female co-star in the form of Hannah Spearritt (former international music star with S Club 7) who plays Emily, a British Secret Service agent, and the two take London by storm joining forces to stop a top secret mind control device from falling into the wrong hands.
Cody Banks, a top teen agent at Kamp Woody – a secret US Government spy training camp for youngsters but holiday camp to their unsuspecting parents – jets to London for his latest assignment in hot pursuit of his former camp commander, Diaz (Keith Allen). The device Diaz has stolen will enable him and his co-conspirators to control the minds of several world leaders including his goal – the President of the United States – all attending a meeting in London but he plans to strike at a glittering reception hosted by Her Majesty The Queen at Buckingham Palace no less.
The fun escalates as Cody Banks goes undercover as a clarinettist at an elite music boarding school and is assigned a new handler, Derek (the very funny Anthony Anderson) who’s desperately trying to get back into the CIA’s good books. Cody covertly monitors Diaz and evil business mogul Kenworth (James Faulkner), the recipient of said mind control device whose wife, Jo Kenworth (Ann Chancellor) is the unsuspecting music school principal.
Cody has a formidable array of gadgets to help his mission succeed including a mouth brace mic, an intelligent clarinet that plays itself, a packet of chewy mints that double as explosives – the list could go on and on! There are also some spectacular stunts interspersed throughout that will keep the audience riveted and many of the locations incorporated into the movie highlight some of London’s well-known tourist sites, plus London’s red buses, a black taxi that doubles as CIA handler Derek’s mobile base of operations and the tube (now you know another reason for some of the train delays on the underground).
However at times the stereotyping of some British aspects do grate slightly and seem very over the top – are we really as eccentric as that! A teen parallel to the James Bond movies the ‘Q’ equivalent in AGENT CODY BANKS 2 leaves a lot to be desired. I thought him really repulsive and found myself cringing. He was not at all up to John Cleese’s standard – what a shame!
On the whole this is a thoroughly entertaining movie that the kids, especially the boys/budding agents, will love immensely. Hannah Spearritt does well keeping up with Frankie Muniz and Anthony Anderson, and gets to use some martial arts skills kicking some butt as well.