In this 1999 action comedy based on Bob Burden's comic books, Ben Stiller nearly steals the show as a low-profile superhero whose greatest weapon is his temper—which occasionally gives him the power to do minor property damage or hurt bad guys slightly but usually just prevents him from getting dates. But he has stiff competition from his cohorts, including Hank Azaria, who's armed with pounds of flatware and a fake accent; William H. Macy, whose wife can't bear to watch him leave the house each day to fight crime wielding only a shovel; and Janeane Garofalo, whose aggression is fueled by unresolved issues with her dad. This slapstick and effects vehicle depends on poker-faced performances, production design that enhances the story partly because it doesn't have to compensate for it, and a premise that provides seemingly inexhaustible opportunities for pratfalls and clever lines. The characters have been designed to make fun of themselves, disguising the craft of writer Neil Cuthbert and director Kinka Usher in getting us to laugh at them. With Kel Mitchell, Paul Reubens, Greg Kinnear, Geoffrey Rush, Claire Forlani, Wes Studi, and Tom Waits. 111 min.
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