Posts Tagged corny

Why Agent Cody Banks is a Creepy Movie


I remember back in my high school days, I watched lots of random movies; something I continue to do to this day.  DVDs were still relatively new and Blockbuster was still king.

I saw trailers for a movie called “Agent Cody Banks”. Just by watching the trailer, it’s a kid-friendly James Bond knockoff starring Frankie Muniz and Hilary Duff. At the time, both of them were popular but stuck in their respective typecasts before any dramatic events that would happen in their future. Needless to say, the movie did not hide its corniness and the movie had many bad reviews.

The Movie

There was something in the trailer that caught my attention. There is a line spoken that really makes this movie open to interpretation “We spent $10 million training this kid, and we did not teach him how to talk to women?!” Yes it’s very corny, but that’s the plot of the movie: Cody went to secret agent training camp where he learned lots of skills; during his training, he over-exaggerated his experience with women; because of this, he was selected to be transferred to her school, have the same classes and get close to the girl (Hilary Duff’s character) and find information about her father.

The comedy in the movie is the usual over-the-top, slapstick, non-violent, blue-screen stuff that would be in any Bond knockoff.

It just shocking to think about how the movie concentrates on the objective that this boy must talk to this girl because it is his objective and her life is in grave danger. He is humiliated, patronized and the video posted above really shows how many jokes are thrown at the audience, within the PG rating. Just the idea that Cody lied about his experience with girls, becoming the main reason why he is assigned this mission. Why would anyone be shocked that he lied? Would there be any reason to believe he was telling the truth? I mean, if they really wanted to protect the girl, couldn’t they just get another girl to be friends with her in school and they’d hang out together outside of school? Or, hire an older romantic guy, give him all her personal details so he can use it to attract her if they really wanted to go down the relationship route.

Anyways, the day is saved after various cliche action scenes and cheesy dialog. It is a bad movie. Anyways, here are some points worth noting:

  • Directed by Harald Zwart, who would go on to direct 2010′s The Karate Kid. He also directed The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, another movie that got bad reviews and was compared to Twilight. The movie does have nice special effects.
  • Prevail makes an appearance. He is one of the rappers from the group Swollen Members
  • Keith David plays the CIA director. He would play a similar role as leader of a secret organization in Mr. & Mrs. Smith, starring Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt.
  • Moneca Delain plays the hologram. Although her role is very tiny in this movie, I remember her because she once made a song called “back in the day” which is directly based on “true” by Spandau Ballet. She also played a cheerleader in Smallville.
  • Veronica (the hot chick) is played by Angie Harmon.
  • Frankie Muniz was born in 1985. He is two years older than me. He was 18 when he was in this movie.


Although many people would brush it of as “yet another kid’s movie”, the boy-meets-girl plot really stands out. It’s a very cliched plot; I recently watched Paranoia which had its own boy-meets-girl subplot. Silver Linings Playbook was a very popular movie and I like it because it’s just as much about Pat letting go of his ex-wife as it is about accepting his fate and falling in love with Tiffany. In my opinion, choosing between an older, scared ex-wife with a restraining order and a younger, sexier Jennifer Lawrence is a no-brainer! Anyways, I just think the idea that the guy has to initiate contact with the girl first, getting everything right the first time and the girl being portrayed as a high-class superwoman that will turn down anyone that doesn’t fit her exact description of perfect can be easily misinterpreted. I remember speaking to someone about how there are more men than women in the world and making crude remarks about this. Love and marriage isn’t a magic solution that will leave you on the path to riches and make the world a better place. Just saying.

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The Corny Factor 2: Trace Amounts

Hybrid Corn

Hybrid Corn No.1 by GoBuggyGo

I was watching some movies with my brother.  We watched Superman/Shazam!: The Return of Black Adam.  I told him that I didn’t like it because it’s only half an hour long and it follows the straight pattern of “child is weak” – “child gets picked on” – “child gets power” – “child fights evil and is strong again”.  Don’t get me wrong, Superman is awesome and overall, the animation was awesome.  I love superheroes; I think they’re awesome.  In summary, I really don’t know anything about Captain Marvel other than the fact that he’s a kid that gets magical powers whenever he says “Shazam”; I could go on with my life calling him “Magic Superman” and nobody would say anything.  If I really wanted to learn about Captain Marvel, I should read the comics; it’s just that this movie doesn’t explain much for anyone who knows nothing about Captain Marvel.  Despite my personal opinion, my brother loved it and thought it was awesome.

Deep down inside, I realize that I am not the target audience for these type of movies.  PG-13 movies sell more than any other genre; it is between the PG and R rating.  I also believe that people rarely go to a movie theater to watch it alone; in this case, they’d rent or buy it online.

Non-Violent Superheroes on TV

Corn by Sasakei

Corn by Sasakei

It’s obvious that parents don’t want their children to watch anything that could shock them or have a negative effect on their upbringing; I don’t need kids to know that.  For example, take a look at Batman: The Brave and the Bold on TV.

It’s just that I remember watching Spawn on TV when I was in high school.  The first time I watched it, I was shocked by the violence, profanity, shadows, dark themes and its overall aggressive tone.  It was canceled after 18 episodes; I assumed that HBO wanted to replace its late-night slot with a higher-rated show.  I watched some episodes recently and hear the usual comments whenever anyone watches a show like this:

  • “Eeeeekk!  That’s horrible”
  • “Why do you like these shows?”
  • “That’s really twisted”
  • “Can we watch something else?”

I think Todd McFarlane is a genius!  He does plan on resurrecting the TV series and it is currently in “development hell”.  I wish him luck and I really want to watch it uncensored; I hope it has the same strong writing and style the original had.

Whenever I watch any superhero movies, I watch it knowing it will have some corniness:

  • Nobody dies; they just disappear or go to another dimension.
  • Everyone’s power consists of martial arts, super strength, fire, lasers and speed.
  • Money is EVIL!

I don’t feel that I’m being hateful or too harsh; I just know that I’m not the target audience.  I think we’ve become so used to the family-friendly superhero image that we don’t question it anymore.  I’ve also seen Batman: Under the Red Hood and I still like it.

I think another issue I have is that I stopped reading comic books!  I remember I used to stop by the comic book store at a mall and spend $5 on a single comic book, going home and reading it.  It’s really making me thinking about getting into that again.

Sweet Corn Landscape by Bookgrl

Sweet Corn Landscape by Bookgrl

In summary, I feel like I hate more movies than I like.  I remember telling my brother that I hate District 9 because “it’s made for people who don’t understand science fiction”.  I’m aware that it has themes of discrimination; it’s just a movie I didn’t like very much for different reasons.

I’m still a fan of Marvel and DC despite their ways of toning down the content for TV and film to reach a wider audience.  I think the 2 Iron Man movies have great special effects.  I feel that too much time is spent on showing that Tony Stark is a socially awkward; for an Iron Man movie, I personally don’t care about Tony Stark’s human side.  Did you know that Iron Man was originally supposed to take place during the Cold War?  It’s just whenever I watch anything, I can’t resist nitpicking and seeing the corny bits to make it appeal to more people without using mature themes.  We’ve learned to accept it and it’s not something people question.  Whenever I do, people look at me funny and it’s usually something I keep to myself.

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