The plot is unremittingly predictable. After being made by 9-year-old Sophie (Chloe Coleman), CIA operative JJ (Dave Bautista) is blackmailed into becoming her magic genie of sorts. When she’s not manipulating his hulkiness to her advantage, Sophie, a mini-reconnaissance expert in her own right, spends much of the running time alternating between boning up on the ins-and-outs of espionage and grooming JJ as her replacement dad. When JJ and Sophie are onscreen, it’s a laugh-out-loud delight to watch. We mock the things we are to be. For two-thirds of the picture, director Peter Segal (Tommy Boy, Grudge Match) and his writers take delight in mercilessly goofing on action movie tropes, particularly the one that involves characters walking towards the camera as the world flares up behind them. But in the end, it’s just these sorts of routine chases and explosions that will no doubt draw yawns from even the film’s prepubescent target audience. And there’s a penny in it for the first one able to guess what shot caps the big action scene. (2020) — Scott Marks
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