As you know, I have a fondness of Will Smith so great that it allows me to enjoy truly awful movies like Wild Wild West. I also greatly enjoy seeing older movies on the big screen. When I heard the Retrodome was doing a double feature for Men in Black 1 & 2, I knew we HAD to see it.
I can't remember the first time I saw Men in Black. It must have been at a friend's house, because there was no way Mom would have taken me to that movie, and back in sixth grade I had no way to get to a theater on my own. But I greatly enjoyed it. It had fantastic special effects for the time and aliens and everyone was dressed in a suit, looking badass!
I think I saw the second Men in Black movie with Kitty and Bandaid...but I'm not sure. I definitely saw it at the theatres. It wasn't nearly as good, but hey, it was still Will Smith running around in a suit and there was action and mayhem. Good times.
So yes, definitely had to see Men in Black again, but decided to skip the sequel. When Seanie and I got to the Retrodome, all the employees were dressed up in suits with sunglasses, which was GREAT. One of the things things I love about the Retrodome is they always throw themselves into each showing, even when the audience attending is tiny. (I think eight people showed up for this showing.) They had trivia questions before the movie started. I won a free popcorn for knowing which musician made a cameo in MiB II as an alien (Michael Jackson) and Seanie won a free movie pass because he knew what stadium appears in the climatic action sequence in MiB I (Shea Stadium).
So the first thing I noticed when I was watching this movie for the first time in years was OH MY GOSH WHAT IS WILL SMITH WEARING???? First he's swimming in a oversized white football jersey, than he's wearing a hideous orange track jacket. I guess I know that this is what rap and hip hop artists were wearing at the time, but geez, it still looks awful. Thank goodness Agent K quickly swoops in and recruits him to join Men In Black, and he has to spend the rest of the movie looking polished.
That said, loved it all the same. It moves along pretty quickly at 98 minutes; modern action movies all seem determined to clock in at over two hours, and as a result they feel bloated and tend to drag. (I'm looking at you, Green Hornet.) There's enough gunfights and exploding aliens that I felt I got my money's worth of action, but I like that the story takes its time to develop the characters and the alien world that Agent J suddenly finds himself thrown into.
Sure, the special effects are dated now. That exploding immigrant alien at the opening of the movie looks really silly now, but I'm sure it looked ridiculous in 1997, too. But overall the movie's story and humor are strong enough that it holds up almost fifteen years later.