Ape Week: Spymate 🌭

Spymate is the kind of movie you throw on on a lazy Sunday morning, when your opera plans fall through, or when you feel like hammering yourself in the crotch in film form. From the director of Air Buddies and Most Vertical Primate, it’s a movie only worth watching if you’re being paid to write about it. But is it worth reading about? Probably also no, but what the hell, we’re here.

Our saga begins with perhaps the most shocking images of all, the titles of two reputable production companies.

That’s right, this movie wasn’t farted out of some guy’s camcorder; it was farted out of the labor of a hundred human beings including celebrities and everything. That doesn’t make it not a fart, just an expensive one.

As if to prove that very point, we are then whisked away to a desert wasteland where one lonely chimp is toddling over the dunes like John Wick if he wore a wildly problematic “Arab guy” outfit.

This turns out to be a rescue attempt, as Minkey the Monkey must save his spy partner from a hostage situation. In a profession where you’re allowed to have any name you want, this dude goes by “Mr. Muggins.”

A chimpanzee sword fight ensues, while lots of guys dressed like stock terrorists “speak native language.” Always a good sign when the subtitles are afraid to call out any particular ethnicity. I’m sure those actors are speaking fluent Arabic, and not a broad parody of same.

Fortunately, Minkey’s packing a hang glider and enough C4 to cause an international incident. That monkey just absolutely reduced several men to chunky pink pudding. USA! USA!

But Mr. Muggins has seen enough of the horrors of war. As his nostrils flare with the stench of burnt human flesh, he confides this to Minkey.

Yeah, no shit, we had to send a monkey to save you. Sir, you’re no James Bond, or even James Bond’s orangutan.

Our heroes are aided in their mission by a classic “man in the van.” If you’re wondering whatever happened to the mom from That ’70s Show…uh, she died. Yeah, that’s the ticket. I’m sure Deborah Jo Rupp would rather we think of her as dead than as being in this movie.

The screen wipes and a chyron says “10 years later.” Considering that chimpanzees only live about thirty years, we have to assume Minkey is off on a beach somewhere, flinging shit and masturbating like all retirees. Even Muggins has left the spy game behind, and instead taken on a job so tedious his daughter has to remind him what it is in the sweatiest exposition scene ever shot.

Minkey, in fact, now works at the circus, because the life of a slave to human entertainment is a harsh and bitter one. His act, such as it is, involves flying around on a jetpack only to land and calmly walk into the venue so no one even sees him doing that.

Minkey’s jetpack shenanigans are short-lived though, as we’re then introduced to the movie’s primary villain, Richard Kind slumming it so hard that it makes actual slums seem like garish Trumpian penthouses.

See, Mr. Muggins’ expositing daughter is a science genius, to such a degree that the local newspaper puts her on the front page, presumably bumping a piece about a raccoon hitman to page two.

Dr. Farley (Kind) tricks her into getting into his limo so he can kidnap her, a fact he allows himself to feel really good about.

No shit dude, she’s twelve.

Then this brilliant master criminal sends Papa Muggins a video admitting to the kidnapping, so that rather than just going missing, his daughter can force him to team up with his old partner for one last mission (at least until Spymate 2: ‘Panzee Panic).

Muggins re-recruits this innocent and aging animal, as well as his four circus performer pals, because apparently the way you become a spy is to ask any spy if it’s cool if you spy with them.

Easy as that, we’re back in the game. Time for some spy shit. And where would a spy be without their gadgets? This time around, the monkey is given not one, but two guns, and a little suit that makes him look almost exactly like John Travolta in Pulp Fiction.

For this he is rightly jailed, with his own cute little convict outfit and everything.

Just kidding. That’s actually part of an elaborate flashback that fills in Minkey’s backstory, lest anyone doubt the veracity of this movie about a monkey spy. That’s how we learn that Mike Muggins met Minkey when he was ordered to take him out and drown him for the government, but didn’t have the heart. Coward.

Back in the present, the plucky duo track down a person of interest, which takes them all the way to Jamaica, a sequence which I’m sure will be handled with the same level of racial sensitivity the film has shown so far.

The person in question is Dr. Amour, a sex kitten superscientist who’s only in the movie so she can do a James Bond woman-emerges-from-the-ocean scene, then slide conveniently into the background where she gets no character development whatsoever. Probably for the best.

While Muggins clumsily hits on her, one of Richard Kind’s goons spies on them using a special spy camera capable of zooming in while having a bunch of shit in the way block your view.

Luckily, Minkey is there to snap the albino’s neck. Whew, that was a close one!

Less fortunately, the movie then forces us to watch a whole sequence with the circus performers, totally chimp-less, with no bearing on the plot whatsoever.

I know what you’re thinking: final destination? Do they all get decapitated by boards flying off the back of a truck? Let’s say yes and move on…

…to yet another quick encapsulation of an entire people, this time in Japan. The chimp bows over and over, encouraging others to bow back in what the Japanese consider an orgy. You can tell because Minkey is clearly sucking his own dick.

Meanwhile, old man Muggins mugs and gags an innocent bystander so he can steal their clothes. We never check on this man again, so it’s safe to say he at least pisses and shits himself before anyone comes to his rescue. Spies are cool!

The albino guy reports in to Richard Kind, after which Minkey hangs from a departing chopper.

Incidentally, that’s how the production ran through four of the seven Minkeys they were allowed to kill. Anything for film.

Kind then invents his own slur for chimps. More like Richard UNkind, amiright?

The action shifts to an arctic base as Muggins and Dr. Amour – the ocean woman – struggle to keep up. Probably because they think compass directions are relative rather than concrete.

Minkey himself pauses briefly to meet Pat fucking Morita and train as a ninja, which in this case means somersaulting around for a while and kicking Pat in the nutsack so hard that he briefly turns into a stuntman.

The villain keeps Muggins’ daughter pacified by pretending to be him, which yields a shot that will live forever in my nightmares: a man ripping his own face off to reveal Richard Kind.

After that stops working, she tries to escape but is stopped easily by some guards because, again, she’s twelve. There’s nothing difficult about this.

Minkey departs his training montage after all the ninjas prostrate themselves to a golden idol of him, because apparently ninjas don’t care if they break the First Commandment.

It’s shortly after this that Minkey infiltrates Kind’s secret base, where he runs into his old friend the albino goon and snaps his neck a second time for good measure.

Muggins and Amour finally join the party, causing the bad guy to do the most Richard Kind thing possible: immediately give up.

Pat Morita jumps in to help kick some butt even though he explicitly said he wouldn’t, and Minkey celebrates their reunion by showing everyone what an avid eater of puss he is.

The crew steal a snowmobile to get away, and naturally Mike Muggins decides to ride with the hot chick, leaving his daughter and partner to figure their own shit out.

Everyone snowboards away, and it turns out the third time’s a charm for our main goon, who gets shot by a monkey and then swallowed by an avalanche, as we all must someday.

This is met with general approval.

Unwilling to trash just three celebrity legacies, the very end of the movie sees the President charge our spies with another mission. The President in this case is played by Barry Bostwick, doing one scene over video and cashing that paycheck faster than a chimp can snap an albino’s neck.

In the end, Spymate is a sloppy hacked-together mess of a movie, so naturally it took four people to write it. Hey, that’s the same as this column!

And with that, Minkey is off again, to his next thrilling adventure: starring in Nope.

This article was brought to you by our fine sponsor and Hot Dog Supreme: M Jahi Chappell, who also just came out of retirement to rip the limbs off an albino.

One reply on “Ape Week: Spymate 🌭”

Oh hey!, The male human lead is the dopey cop son in Kung Fu: The Legend Continues! That was a great terrible show, perhaps never reaching greater heights than having David Carradine swat at ghosts.

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