Johnny English Strikes Again
|Johnny English Strikes Again|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||David Kerr|
|Screenplay by||William Davies|
by Neal Purvis
|Music by||Howard Goodall|
|Edited by||Tony Cranstoun|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Box office||$159 million|
Johnny English Strikes Again is a 2018 action comedy film directed by David Kerr. A sequel to Johnny English Reborn (2011), it is the third instalment of the Johnny English series. The film stars Rowan Atkinson in the title role, alongside Ben Miller, Olga Kurylenko, Jake Lacy and Emma Thompson. The film follows the titular MI7 agent who is called into action, when all undercover operatives are exposed in a cyber attack.
The film was released in cinemas in the United Kingdom on 5 October 2018 and in the United States on 26 October 2018, by Universal Pictures. The film received generally mixed reviews from critics but was a box office success, grossing $159 million worldwide.
MI7 is being targeted by a massive cyber attack from the South of France, exposing the identities of all its current field agents. As a result, MI7 is forced to reinstate older inactive agents in order to track down the culprits behind the attack. Among the reinstated agents is Johnny English, who has since retired from the secret service and is working as a geography teacher; but is shown to secretly spend most of that time instead training his young students in the dark arts of espionage.
At the MI7 reception area, English accidentally incapacitates all the other fellow retired agents being brought in, leaving him alone to take on the mission. He then insists on being given the services of his old sidekick, Bough, who is still a clerk at the new MI7. English and Bough collect their equipment, and to remain invisible to the cyber attacker, they ditch their mobile phones and choose an old Aston Martin (much older than the one which they drove in the first film) as their choice of transport for their mission to the South of France.
They arrive at the Hotel Magnifique in Antibes, the place where the cyber attack being investigated roughly originated from. Disguised as waiters, they manage to steal a mobile phone with a photograph of their next target, an elaborate yacht named the Dot Calm. While flambéing shrimp, English accidentally sets fire to the Cote de Roc restaurant across the street from the hotel, and the pair escape before they can be caught. They locate the yacht in a nearby marina and make an attempt to sneak on board it during the night. They are caught by a Russian operative aboard named Ophelia Bhuletova, but they escape from the room they are detained in, and on the way out, stumble upon a vast array of computer servers in the bowels of the yacht. They make note of the discovery and escape from the yacht.
Back ashore, they decide to stalk Ophelia. When they eventually spot her leaving the yacht, they follow her car along the serpentine roads of Southern France. After a wild goose chase, their Aston Martin runs out of fuel while Ophelia soldiers on in her electric BMW i3. However, Ophelia returns and she and English agree to a meeting at the Hotel de Paris in Cagnes-sur-Mer. Later that evening, while English is meeting Ophelia at the hotel bar, Bough discovers evidence that suggests she could be a spy.
English, now infatuated with Ophelia, flatly refuses to entertain Bough's premise. Later that night, Ophelia is shown receiving orders from her unknown superiors to eliminate English, but she fails to do so, after English accidentally mixes up the sleeping pills and instead consumes ones that turn him hypereactive, evading her attempts.
Meanwhile, the Prime Minister is shown to be contemplating a meeting with Silicon Valley billionaire Jason Volta. A further series of cyber attacks forces the Prime Minister's hand and the UK Government and Volta solidify an agreement to be revealed during a forthcoming G12 meeting. English and Bough arrive back home, and having learnt that Volta is the owner of the Dot Calm and the cyber attack mastermind, English is tasked to complete a virtual reality simulation, in which he explores the billionaire's mansion. However, he fails to unlock the floor pad to keep himself in the room, and unknowingly assaults an elderly wheelchair-bound lady in a sandwich shop, beats up said sandwich shop's manager with two baguettes, hijacks an open-top bus and pushes the tour guide off the top deck.
Seeking more convincing proof, MI7 arranges for English and Bough to infiltrate Volta's mansion. Once at the mansion, English records evidence about Volta's evil plans with a mobile phone, but English is captured along with Ophelia (who revealed herself to be a spy out to kill both English and Volta). He manages to escape and hijacks a driving instructor's car and fends off a chase by Volta to arrive safely back at MI7. However, he accidentally lifts up the wrong mobile phone whilst leaving the car and fails to convince Pegasus and the Prime Minister about Volta's schemes.
The Prime Minister, having heard both the restaurant and virtual reality incidents, has had enough of English's antics. She fires him and decides to proceed with the G12 meeting in Scotland. Bough convinces English to continue and stop Volta without MI7 support. They enlist the assistance of Bough's wife, Lydia, the captain of a Navy submarine HMS Vengeance and arrive at the meeting location, Garroch Castle by Loch Nevis, in Scotland.
Up in the castle's tower, Ophelia attempts to kill Volta, but Volta reveals that he has known her true identity as a spy from the beginning, which is why he has immunized himself to the poison she keeps in her ring (and which she has attempted to use on him) and removed the firing pin from her service handgun so that she can no longer fire it. Fortunately, English climbs up the tower using an exosuit and manages to intervene before Volta can kill Ophelia, but is ejected out due to a strap caught on a window. Ophelia takes advantage of the chaos to escape.
Volta now joins the Prime Minister and the other G12 nation leaders for the meeting. English tries to stop Volta unsuccessfully once again. Volta then reveals his true plan of extorting the G12 nations' leaders for control over their countries' data. English decides to call Pegasus for help, but forgets about a warning given by Lydia about using a mobile phone near the submarine.
Pegasus’ secretary unintentionally places two phones next to each other: one from English, the other from Lydia who is calling to confirm a launch code that English has inadvertently keyed in by using the phone. He gives the order to attack and Lydia gives the order to launch a ballistic missile that homes in on English's Sherbet Fountain disguised beacon left on the Dot Calm, destroying the yacht and thereby the server from which the attack is being routed as a result. English, who is wearing a creaky suit of armour, Bough, and Ophelia chase Volta, as he heads toward his helicopter to escape and reroute the attack to his Nevada server.
Ophelia gives English a tablet so that he can disable Volta’s Aerospatiale Gazelle 314B helicopter. After Volta mocks English over his inability to use digital technology, English throws the tablet at Volta's head, knocking him out and smashes Volta's phone to stop the attack. Volta and his men are arrested, and the Prime Minister praises English for his bravery and he receives a lot of publicity after accidentally disrobing himself in front of the press and the G12 leaders. He returns to the school, where he finds his students giving him a hero's welcome upon his return. The film ends as we see the headmaster about to eat one of English's explosive jelly babies, much to English's horror.
- Rowan Atkinson as Sir Johnny English, a geography teacher and retired MI7 agent who is reinstated for a mission.
- Olga Kurylenko as Ophelia Bhuletova, a Russian spy and Johnny's love interest.
- Ben Miller as Angus/Jeremy Bough, an MI7 agent who was an old assistant to English.
- Adam James as Pegasus, the head of MI7.
- Emma Thompson as the UK Prime Minister
- Jake Lacy as Jason Volta, a Silicon Valley tech billionaire who is promoting a system that could improve data management. The main antagonist in the film.
- Vicki Pepperdine as Lydia, Bough's wife
- Pippa Bennett-Warner as Lesley
- Miranda Hennessy as Tara
- Irena Tyshyna as Viola Lynch
- David Mumeni as Fabian
- Tuncay Gunes as Ted Guest
- Samantha Russell as the Prime Minister of Sweden
- Nick Owenford as an Australian aide
- Junichi Kajioka as a Japanese diplomat
- Matthew Beard as P
- Pauline McLynn as Mrs Trattner
- Michael Gambon as Agent Five
- Charles Dance as Agent Seven
- Edward Fox as Agent Nine
In May 2017, it was announced that Rowan Atkinson would be returning to take the role of Johnny English in the sequel to the film Johnny English Reborn (2011). On 3 August 2017, Working Title Films announced that they had begun production and filming with the director David Kerr. The cinematographer is Florian Hoffmeister.
The production designer is Simon Bowles, who won an award for his designs for this movie at the 2019 British Film Designers Guild Awards, shared with set decorator Liz Griffiths and supervising art director Ben Collins. Parts were also filmed in Welham Green, Hertfordshire; and in Gloucestershire. Filming continued in France from 26 September, at the Saint Aygulf beach in Var.
Johnny English Strikes Again was scheduled to be released in both the United Kingdom and United States on 12 October 2018 by Universal Pictures; the date for the United States was later moved up to 20 September 2018, before being pushed back to 26 October 2018. It was released on 5 October 2018 by Cinemax Angola.
The film was set to be released digitally on 4 February 2019, and on DVD and Blu-Ray format on February 18, but in Australia, it was released on 19 December 2018. The Blu-Ray and DVD release in the United States and Canada was January 22, 2019.
Johnny English Strikes Again has grossed $4.4 million in the United States and Canada, and $154.5 million elsewhere (including $23.2 million in the United Kingdom), for a total worldwide gross of $159 million.
In the United States and Canada, Johnny English Strikes Again was released alongside Hunter Killer and Indivisible as well as the wide expansion of Mid90s, and was projected to gross around $2 million from 544 theaters in its opening weekend. It ended up debuting to $1.6 million, finishing 12th at the box office. Deadline Hollywood noted the film's American release was essentially a formality, as it was not built for the audience in the United States, and thus the low opening wasn't seen as a disappointment to the studio.
Outside North America, the film debuted to $5.5 million in the United Kingdom and grossed $14.1 million overall in its second week for a to date total gross of $66.5 million. In its third weekend of international release, the film added another $9.8 million from 57 countries, including a $2.4 million opening in Germany, and a running cume of $96 million.
On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 37% based on 105 reviews, with an average rating of 4.73/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "Johnny English Strikes Again might get a few giggles out of viewers pining for buffoonish pratfalls, but for the most part, this sequel simply strikes out." On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 39 out of 100, based on 22 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews".
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