When I first heard that Steve Carell would be playing Maxwell Smart, I was thrilled. I couldn't think of anyone better suited to fill Don Adams' telephonic shoes.
I used to watch the show when I was a kid, and although the only specific scene I still remember was one involving a tarantula and a jar of mayonnaise, this new version brought it all back.
Carell is the perfect Maxwell Smart. He strikes precisely the right balance between slapstick bumbling and an almost accidental competence. Anne Hathaway does a good but overly serious '99' and Dwayne Johnson proves once again that he's far more interesting as a comedic actor than a wrestler.
My only problem with the new Get Smart is that the comic timing seems to be slightly... well, off.
I'm not sure if it's an issue with the writing or the editing, but many of the punch lines just seem to go on a beat or two too long.
The result is a very funny movie that could have been funnier.
I give it three stars.
(Murray agrees. We've got to stop doing that.)