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Film / Johnny English Reborn

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Ambrose: Welcome back. How long has it been?
Johnny English: Oh, I don't know, five years, three months and six days. Or something.

Johnny English Reborn (released in some countries as Johnny English Returns) is a British spy comedy film parodying the James Bond secret agent genre. The film is the sequel to Johnny English, and stars Rowan Atkinson reprising his role as the title character and directed by Oliver Parker. It was released on 15th September, 2011.

In the years since MI-7's top spy vanished off the grid, he has been honing his unique skills in a remote region of Asia. But when his agency superiors learn of an attempt against the Chinese premier's life, they must hunt down the highly unorthodox agent. Now that the world needs him once again, Johnny English is back in action. With one shot at redemption, he must employ the latest in hi-tech gadgets to unravel a web of conspiracy that runs throughout the KGB, CIA and even MI-7. With mere days until a heads of state conference, one man must use every trick in his playbook to protect us all. For Johnny English, disaster may be an option...

This film is followed by Johnny English Strikes Again, released in 2018.

Previews: Trailer 1, Trailer 2.

Johnny English Reborn provides examples of:

  • The Ace: Simon Ambrose. He turns out to be a double agent.
  • Acting Unnatural: When Tucker confronts the mole Ambrose at gunpoint in front of Johnny in a washroom, when an unsuspecting old man walks right in. This basically leads to the mole drying his hands, Tucker washing his hands and Johnny taking the same whiz continuously until he leaves.
  • Artistic License Geography: MI7 tells Johnny to go to Hong Kong. They went to Macau when the flight map says Hong Kong.
  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Johnny asks his guru what happens now he's completed his training. The guru replies that he has been communicating with a higher power — then reveals the phone he used to talk to Johnny's superiors in London.
  • Balls of Steel: Johnny after undergoing training at a Tibetan monastery. It proves important later.
  • Boring, but Practical: How Johnny chases down the Chinese assassin while barely breaking a sweat.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: The bodyguard of the president of Mozambique, and Johnny English himself, under the influence of a mind-control drug. Johnny recovers.
  • Cable-Car Action Sequence: At the climax of the movie, Johnny jumps with a snowmobile unto the cable-car where Big Bad Simon Ambrose is trying to flee. Fistycuffs, Groin Attacks and explosion ensue.
  • Chase Scene: Johnny chasing the Chinese assassin.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Johnny's training in withstanding Groin Attacks comes in handy when Ambrose tries it during their climatic fight.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Johnny vs. the Chinese assassin. When the assassin does an incredibly complex series of martial art moves, Johnny stomps on a board, which shoots up and hits him in the groin.
  • Cool Car: The Rolls-Royce Phantom that is given to Johnny upon his return to MI7. Even cooler — that car was owned by Rowan Atkinson in real life at the time. (Sans rocket launcher, regrettably.)
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: In a bit of an inversion, this movie shows Johnny as a very competent secret agent (aside from the occasional update that he missed while training in Tibet for five years, such as who the Prime Minister is or the fact that MI7 is now sponsored by a phone company) with just a few moments of Idiot Ball.
  • Cunning Linguist: Johnny speaks eight languages, including Mandarin — the only problem is he doesn't speak it well.
  • Cutting the Knot: Johnny, repeatedly. His Tibetan Mentor notes that his advantage in combat is his "wisdom".
  • Deadly Dodging: Part of Johnny's effortless curbstomp of a whole group of Chinese assailants. Each time one of them grapple him, he maneuvers the thug so that he's the one hit by the staff-wielding fighter.
  • Death Equals Redemption for Karlenko/Pudovkin.
  • Did the Earth Move for You, Too?: At the end of the movie, our hero blows up the villain in a big explosion; Kate sees this and sighs, "Oh, Johnny!"
  • Distracted by the Sexy: What happens in Mozambique — Johnny is sharing a jacuzzi with a bikini-clad Honey Trap when the president is assassinated.
  • Dragon Their Feet: The cleaning-lady tries to kill Johnny English way after Simon Ambrose is dead and Vortex is dismantled, by disguising as the Queen of England.
  • Dungeon Bypass: Johnny uses a series of these to pursue a Parkour assassin without breaking a sweat.
  • Evil Hand: While fighting the effects of the drug, Johnny regains the control of his left hand while his right hand is still trying to kill the Chinese premier, leading to a quite lengthy one-man fight.
  • Evil Old Folks: The killer cleaner woman. She tries to kill Johnny English four times.
  • Failure-to-Save Murder: Johnny English is blamed for the murder of Mozambique's president. Of course, he was supposed to be guarding him at the time... But who could have predicted that his own bodyguard would be mind-controlled to assassinate him?
  • Fighting from the Inside: Before the climax, resisting Mind Control by Ambrose.
  • Hero Stole My Bike: Johnny in the motorised wheelchair after getting set up by the actual traitor Ambrose, and shot in the leg by MI7, then forced to jack his crippled friend's ride.
  • Hidden Agenda Villain: The actual villains of the film have a very straightforward agenda — they accept money in return for killing people. What isn't very clear is why two of the erstwhile heads of said villainous group have changed their minds about it.
  • Hypercompetent Sidekick: Tucker follows Bough in this department, though not all the time. He displays in some scenes more competence than English, such as correctly pointing the right person to English, only for English to go to the wrong person; identifying the bulletproof umbrella as actually being a rocket launcher, and figuring out that Ambrose is the double agent. But in other scenes, he's even more incompetent than English. Talking on the phone to his mum, and not noticing that a sniper is meters away from him, about to kill their only lead, multiple times letting a enemy agent simply run past him before calling to English, rather than try and stop the agent himself.
  • Kiss of Life: How Johnny is revived by Kate when he passed out from the drug, just before the climax.
  • Legacy Character:
    • Pegasus. While this movie provides a Gender Flip for the character, both Pegasuses have the same function in both movies.
    • Simon Ambrose is designated as #1, which was an agent that died in the first movie, which might make him one as well.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: Upon proving that Death Is Cheap, Johnny takes the whole Took a Level in Badass trope and pushes it to the extreme, proving his true potential.
  • Line-of-Sight Name: Twice.
    • When Johnny tries to bluff his way into a golf game with one of the antagonists.
    • And Ambrose trying to bluff his way out of being exposed as a traitor.
  • Low-Speed Chase: By taking clever short-cuts, Johnny is able to apprehend the Chinese assassin at walking pace.
  • Manchurian Agent: The tactic of the Vortex group.
  • Makeup Weapon: After accidentally consuming a mind control drug, Johnny is ordered to assassinate the Chinese Premier using a pistol disguised as lipstick, initially designed for the female agent Pegasus.
  • Mistaken Identity: Johnny English mistakes Pegasus' mother and the Queen of England for the cleaner assassin. Hilarity Ensues.
  • The Mole: Simon Ambrose is an agent for Vortex who is working inside MI7. Johnny gets confused and believes they have a mole and a vole.
  • Mood Whiplash: Johnny starts dancing to Cameo's Word Up right in the middle of assassinating the Chinese PM.
  • My Greatest Failure: Johnny's face undergoes complex spasms every time the screw-up in Mozambique is mentioned.
  • Noodle Incident: Johnny's incident in Mozambique seems like this when it's mentioned the first few times, until it becomes a central plot point and is revealed roughly halfway through the movie.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Johnny has one when he realizes he just drank a glass of alcohol laced with the mind-controlling drugs.
    • And another at the end when he mistook the Queen of England for the assassin lady from Hong Kong.
  • Only a Flesh Wound: Johnny is initially crippled when he gets shot by the MI7 agents in the church, forcing him to hijack Patch's wheelchair. One scene later, he's running around with no apparent disability.
  • Pocket Rocket Launcher: One of Johnny's spy gadgets is a rocket launcher small enough to be disguised as an umbrella.
  • Porky Pig Pronunciation: Johnny can't pronounce "Timoxylene Barbebutanol".
    Johnny: He's here to give you some Timoxy Bubby... Timoxy Babibi... Timoxi Babbubibi... to give you a drug that will make you obey his every command!
  • Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: "Ambrose... you five-star turd!"
  • Product Placement: MI: 7 is run by Toshiba and extensive branding is seen throughout HQ and even on Johnny's parachute. This is a Take That! against the British government's continued privatization on national services.
  • Protagonist Title: Johnny English.
  • Recurring Element: An old Chinese lady assassin who disguises herself as a cleaning lady kills the main members of the terrorist group Vortex. Aside from the attacks on Johnny and Vortex, she is also noticeable for one more little detail: Johnny ends up attacking other old women who he thinks is the assassin. This includes Pegasus' mother and the freaking Queen! And with a serving tray, no less!
  • Rewind, Replay, Repeat: Kate checks CCTV footage recorded before assassination of the President of Mozambique, revealing an important clue.
  • Right in Front of Me: Johnny fails to recognise the Prime Minister who's seated right next to him. When the PM politely points out his error, Johnny sarcastically comments, "Yeah, right. In your dreams!" A deleted scene has him mistaking Pegasus for his old friend's Sexy Secretary.
  • Slipping a Mickey: This is how Ambrose is going to drug Pegasus into killing Xiang Ping. Johnny takes it by mistake.
  • Spoiler Title: This movie features Johnny cheating death after accidentally drinking the mind-control device that kills its victims. In the process, he is "reborn" by a kiss from Kate.
  • Stalling the Sip: Pamela lifts up her spiked drink just about to take a sip, but keeps putting it down and lifting back up again. Simon, who is watching her from a hidden camera, starts to lose his patience and mutters, "Go on! Go on!". Finally, English breaks into the hotel room in a bodybag saving her from drinking it.
  • Super Wheelchair: Patch's wheelchair has a concealed gun, and can achieve really high speeds. When Johnny is being hunted down by MI7, he ends up stealing Patch's wheelchair for use in a high-speed chase.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Johnny. The training with Tibetan monks paid off rather well.
  • Trash Landing: Johnny escapes Kate's apartment through the garbage chute, and predictably lands in the dumpster. He picks a dirty diaper off his head.
  • Twitchy Eye: Johnny's right eye gets triggered whenever the word Mozambique is mentioned.
  • Under the Truck: Johnny pulls one off on Patch's tricked-out wheelchair.
  • We Named the Monkey "Jack": Pegasus' cat is named Philby, presumably as a Take That! against Kim Philby who was one member of the group of double agents known as the Cambridge Five.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Patch Quartermain (Tim McInnerny, Rowan Atkinson's Blackadder co-star) disappears after his wheelchair is stolen.

"Let's kick some bottom."