The movie carries its stars across Europe in a showcase of McKinnon's weird and wonderful improv talent. But it's the stars who make the package: The equally improvised plot isn't so much fun.
Kunis' Audrey, a complacent store worker hung up on her inability to finish anything, and McKinnon's "over-the-top" Morgan spend most of the time in various elaborate shoot-'em-up scenarios. The spy carrying out the dumping is Drew (Justin Theroux), an ex-CIA agent whose motivations don't quite make sense: He leaves Audrey to protect her, then turns on her when she proves she can handle the spy world. A mysterious big baddie gets a few mentions, but no screen time. Who is he? Maybe he's being saved up for a sequel.
The confusion continues: Audrey and Morgan take a spy adventure in Europe on a whim. They want to carry out Drew's wishes -- deliver an important fantasy football trophy to Vienna -- risking their lives for a not-particularly-charming ex-boyfriend they've just learned was a secret agent. Characters make snap decisions based on throwaway comments, and while it's nice to see two friends who'll do anything for each other, some of their decisions are implausible.
The tone hops between gross-out comedy, arbitrary romance and bone-cracking violence. A taster: A pause in the bathroom between Audrey and suave British MI5 spy Sebastian (Sam Heughan) is interrupted by a giant-sized backpacker loudly relieving himself in the toilet. From car chases to a bizarre killer gymnast (Ivanna Sakhno) torture scene, Audrey and Morgan prove they can handle anything. They scream when people are shot dead, then swiftly carry on.
Moments where our wannabe action heroes haphazardly survive dangerous situations are the highlights, along with details of the friendship between Audrey and Morgan -- there's a brilliant scene where their text messages are revealed on national news. Kunis is McKinnon's necessary yet likeable "straight man", laughing whether scripted or not at McKinnon's perfectly-timed wisecracks. She's also the one shoehorned into a romance much less interesting than the best friend relationship.
It's worth noting the real-life history between Kate McKinnon and Gillian Anderson, who plays ice-cold MI5 leader Wendy. McKinnon made her obsession with Anderson loud and public in a 2008 YouTube video, so scenes with Morgan fangirling over Wendy have an extra layer for those in the know.
A twist in the tale and characters who try to come to personal resolutions won't be enough to get us to call The Spy Who Dumped Me back. Unless you're a McKinnon fan -- then her standout performance anchors the chaos and you can forgive the rest.
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