Get Smart

Rated 2.0

It’s inexplicable why some studio thought that the public was jonesin’ for a theatrical update on the creaky ’60s spy farce. It’s equally perplexing that in doing so they retained so little of the spirit of same. The end result isn’t exactly bad, but it’s not exactly good, either. It just is. Steve Carell steps into the late Don Adams’ telephone shoe as Anne Hathaway assays a more butch Agent 99—both handle themselves adequately. It’s the script and tone that make the flick miss it by this much. An uneasy hybrid of slapstick comedy and straightforward action movie-lite, Get Smart grinds gears painfully between goofiness and seriousness. As such, it delivers a decent amount of chuckles (although it sinks to the bottom-feeder level of comedy: the fat suit). As it limps to a finish, though, the action-shtick takes over as the flick becomes utterly predictable.