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Mystery Men

431 customer reviews

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(Jan 11, 2000)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The hippest cast in history has united to become the funniest superhero team ever. Ben Stiller, Janeane Garofalo, Hank Azaria, William H. Macy, Greg Kinnear, Geoffrey Rush and Paul Reubens join forces in this wild, funny and thoroughly original misadventure. When Captain Amazing, Champion City's legendary superhero, falls into the hands of the evil madman Casanova Frankenstein and his disco-dancing henchmen, there's suddenly a chance for the aspiring superheroes to show what they can do. They're the Mystery Men… a ragtag team of superhero wannabes featuring: Mr. Furious, whose power comes from his boundless rage; The Shoveler, a father who shovels "better than anyone"; The Blue Raja, a fork-flinging mama's boy; The Bowler, who fights crime with the help of her father's skull; The Spleen, whose power is pure flatulence; Invisible Boy, who's only invisible when no one's watching and The Sphinx, a cliche-spewing philosopher. With its outrageous adventure, incredible cast and hip alternative humor, Mystery Men is so irresistibly funny and appealing, seeing it just once will never be enough.

Ever wonder if there was a class system in the world of superheroes? After all the big names like Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, etc., who were the supporting players? The folks assigned to the less-than-stellar gigs of saving only a small part of the world? According to this intermittently successful send-up of comic book heroism, there are indeed masked heroes who struggle and toil for their moment in the super sun. Based on the Dark Horse comic book series, Mystery Men follows the travails of three B-list avengers--Mr. Furious (Ben Stiller), the Shoveler (William H. Macy), and the Blue Raja (Hank Azaria)--as they fight to make themselves known to the citizens of Champion City, quite difficult to do when the flashy Captain Amazing (Greg Kinnear, never better) takes all the cool gigs and has product endorsements up the ying-yang. According to them, it's all a matter of timing--never mind that Mr. Furious never rises above a snit, or that the Blue Raja wears green. Their big break comes when Captain Amazing is abducted by the evil Casanova Frankenstein (Geoffrey Rush), and it's up to this motley crew to save Champion City.

Blessed with a wondrously gifted comic cast and full of droll details, Mystery Men struggles in fits and spurts towards its climax. Transcendently witty in parts, it's also woefully sophomoric in others. Literally, this is the kind of movie in which someone gets off a brilliant line and then sits on a fork. Still, when this movie is rolling, it's gleefully on target, thanks primarily to the mordantly cocky Stiller and Janeane Garofalo as a latecomer to the superhero gang; her secret weapon is a bowling ball in which her dead father's head is encased. The comic chemistry between these two is fierce, and when you add the dryly funny Macy and the endearing Azaria (who finally gets a chance to let loose with his comic gifts), it's a hilarious joyride. Too bad that the gas tank is only half-full; this stunning cast deserves a first-rate vehicle. With Tom Waits as a weapons expert, Claire Forlani as the requisite babe, and Paul Reubens as the Spleen, the world's most flatulent superhero. --Mark Englehart

Special Features

  • Spotlight on Location
  • Feature Commentary with Director Kinka Usher
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Universal Soundtrack Pesentation
  • Music Highlights
  • The Origin of the "Mystery Men" Comic Book Characters
  • Production Notes
  • Cast and Filmmakers
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • DVD-ROM Features

  • Product Details

    • Actors: Ben Stiller, William H. Macy, Hank Azaria, Greg Kinnear, Geoffrey Rush
    • Directors: Kinka Usher
    • Writers: Neil Cuthbert
    • Producers: Lawrence Gordon, Mike Richardson, Lloyd Levin
    • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
    • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
    • Subtitles: English
    • Dubbed: French
    • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
    • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
    • Number of discs: 1
    • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
    • Studio: Universal Studios
    • DVD Release Date: January 11, 2000
    • Run Time: 122 minutes
    • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (431 customer reviews)
    • ASIN: B000035Z38
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,171 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
    • Learn more about "Mystery Men" on IMDb

    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews

    50 of 54 people found the following review helpful By cookieman108 on March 25, 2004
    Format: DVD
    Being acutely familiar with the source material for this film as I collected many a comic book in my youth, I thought Mystery Men (1999) did a really good job staying close to its' roots. Based on characters created by Bob Burden and showcased within the pages of his 'Flaming Carrot' comic book, Mystery Men highlights those 'not so super' super heroes, the blue collar ones that don't necessarily have the most spectacular powers, but seem to share a desire to protect their fellow man against evil and it's minions.
    The film has a pretty impressive ensemble cast including Ben Stiller as Mr. Furious, William H. Macy as The Shoveller, Janeane Garolafo as The Bowler, Paul Rubens as The Spleen, Hank Azaria as The Blue Raja, Greg Kinnear as Captain Amazing, and Geoffery Rush as the villain Casanova Frankenstein. The supporting cast includes Claire Forlani, Lena Olin, Tom Waits, Eddie Izzard, Artie Lange, and Louise Lassiter.
    The story involves the kidnapping of Capitol City's most popular hero, Captain Amazing (Kinnear) by Casanova Frankenstein, and a small group of less than stellar heroes attempting to rescue him while thwarting the villain's evil scheme to subjugate the city to his will. The core group, consisting of Mr.
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    30 of 31 people found the following review helpful By R. M. Fisher TOP 500 REVIEWER on November 16, 2003
    Format: DVD
    Champion City is the home of one of the greatest superheroes of all time: Captain Amazing. Unfortunatly for him, his crime fighting skills have left him without any publicity left except for the odd toothpaste commercial. Reduced to fighting gangs at nursing homes and steadily loosing his sponsers, Captain Amazing comes up with a plan. Using his alterego, the millionaire Lance Hunt, he bids for the release of one of his favourite arch-villains to be released in the hopes of defeating him and gaining some much-needed recognition. Thus, Casanova Frankenstein is released.
    But there is another level to the superhero regime: the Shoveller (whose weapon is various types of shovels), the Blue Rajah (who throws forks, has a fake British accent and still lives with his mum) and Mr Furious (whose power comes from his barely controlled temper and has trouble coming up with suitable comebacks) are all wannabe heroes, who usually emerge from a fight with black eyes. Yet when Captain Amazing goes missing, they agree that it's up to them to stop Casanova and rescue the city from whatever terrible scheme he's cooking up.
    To do this, the boys need reinforcements: after a rather dismal audition for new recruits to the team, the trio install the Bowler, whose murdered father's skull she keeps incased in a bowling ball, the Spleen whose power comes from the awful potency of his flatulence, and the Invisible Boy...who can only turn invisible when no one's looking at him. Rounding it off is the Sphinx, who takes the superheroes in for some physcho-babble training ("control your power, or your power will control you", and so on), and Professor Heller, who provides the team with the non-lethal weapons he invents.
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    21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Reviewer on April 27, 2000
    Format: VHS Tape
    Play it straight, and they will laugh; the credo of director Kinka Usher and a superb cast that propels "Mystery Men" to the status of #1 cult movie of all time. When the evil Casanova Frankenstein (Geoffrey Rush) is released from a mental institution and threatens to take over Champion City after capturing the local superhero, Captain Amazing (Greg Kinnear), a trio of wannabe superheroes, Mr. Furious (Ben Stiller), The Shoveler (William H. Macy) and The Blue Raja (Hank Azaria), come to the rescue. Before confronting such a formidable opponent, however (Frankenstein is joined by a myriad assortment of underworld denizens), they realize that more help is needed and decide to recruit. Soon they are joined by The Invisible Boy (Kel Mitchell), The Spleen (Paul Reubens), The Bowler (Janeane Garofalo) and a heavy hitter from down South, The Sphinx (Wes Studi). The result is a brilliant ensemble piece that delivers the goods without ever patronizing the audience, playing it straight at all times. Witty dialogue, exemplary performances (especially by Stiller, Garofalo and Macy), and a number of absolutely hilarious scenes make this an instant classic. The solid supporting cast includes Lena Olin (Dr. Annabel Leek), Eddie Izzard (Tony P.), Tom Waits (Doc Heller), Claire Forlani (Monica), Louise Lasser (The Blue Raja's mother), Jenifer Lewis (Lucille) and Pras (Tony C.). "Mystery Men" is a truly inspired film, laced with subtle humor that will keep you laughing and thinking about it for a long time. This is a movie that can be seen time and again, with a new chuckle to be gleaned with every viewing, guaranteed. For a good time and a lot of laughs, treat yourself to this masterwork of comedy; you'll soon discover it's the real deal, and you won't regret it. In the immortal words of The Sphinx: "We are number one! All others are number two, or lower-"
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    By 2007 standards, before they had 5 year's worth of reference material and demo-worthy Blu Rays to compare it to, it scored 3 stars in video and 3 1/2 in audio. I hope that when this comes to... Read More
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