Screen Time: 80%
Role: Carmen Cortez
Age: 12 years old
Directed: Robert Rodriguez
Language: English, Spanish
Genre: Action, Musical, Science Fiction
Gregorio and Ingrid Cortez are the world's best secret agents. Their mission is to assassinate each other. When they get within one inch, they fall in love. They marry, and have two kids, Carmen and Juni. They don't tell their kids. Ten years later, they are called into a mission. When their Uncle Felix babysits the Cortez kids, and rogue agents invade the house, Uncle Felix reveals the truth, their parents are spies and were just kidnapped, and Felix is not their uncle. Carmen and Juni escape, and try to rescue Mom and Dad, and save the world.
Movie Reviews"Spy Kids" is easy to pick apart if you stop to think about any part of the unmanageably convoluted plot. Old espionage rivalries, double-agents, androids, transmogrification, genetically engineered miniature brains, sibling rivalry, and the fact that Floop is actually the pawn of two even badder baddies all come into play.
"Spy Kids" beats to death its cheek-pinching, head-patting themes of self-esteem and family ("Spy work, that's easy," somebody says. "Keeping a family together is the mission worth fighting for.") Like many light family movies, "Spy Kids" is weightless and possibly won't last long in one's memory.
Clad in form-fitting leather outfits and loaded up with gadgets galore (rocket packs, rappelling wire and an "instant cement" version of Silly String all come in handy), Carmen and Juni avoid capture by the double-agents, outmaneuver Floop's army of mutant henchmen (they're literally all thumbs), navigate the labyrinth of his lair, foil a plan to replace the children of world leaders with robotic clones, reunite the Cortez clan (including their gadget-building estranged uncle), and reform their adversary.
"Spy Kids" could have been a better movie. It's far too easily sidetracked by the confusing details of the endlessly meandering plot and by gimmicks for the sake of gimmicks -- like Floop's "virtual room" of expensive F/X that advance the plot not one iota.
But while such fallacies are frustrating because the film falls short of its promising potential, in the puerile fun department it couldn't possibly be improved upon. So it's better to just forgive its shortcomings and relish it as one of those rare movies that can truly amuse absolutely everybody who has any kid left in their heart at all.