Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 38 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 38
  2. Negative: 5 out of 38
  1. Reviewed by: Lisa Schwarzbaum
    May 23, 2012
    91
    MIB3 is one giant leap for mankind because Josh Brolin shows up to play the younger Agent K. And he just nails the feat, triumphantly creating a riff on/homage to the Tommy Lee Jones-ness of K that goes much deeper (and funnier) than a simple imitation of drawl and speech patterns.
  2. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    May 24, 2012
    80
    It manages, in the end, to be touching as well as hectic and whimsical, and to send a few interesting thematic bubbles into the air, having to do with lost fathers, obscure regrets and racial reconciliation.
  3. Reviewed by: John DeFore
    May 22, 2012
    80
    Finding smart ways to bring novelty to the franchise without forsaking what made the original so much fun (and in fact doubling down on some of those qualities), Barry Sonnenfeld's Men in Black 3 easily erases the second installment's vague but unpleasant memory and -- though we might hope producers will quit while they're ahead -- paves the way for future installments.
  4. Reviewed by: Joshua Rothkopf
    May 22, 2012
    80
    You do sense, though, that the people behind MIB3 (mainly veteran producer Walter F. Parkes and script doctor David Koepp) were smart enough to let the audience grow up a bit, enough to get the Andy Warhol jokes and one brilliantly weird creation, a delicate alien who can see every outcome at once.
  5. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    May 25, 2012
    75
    The aliens are as gloppy and gross as ever. I especially liked the joke about Andy Warhol being an alien – except didn't we know that already?
  6. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    May 24, 2012
    75
    While this third go-round may not seem necessary amid summer's blockbusters, it's an entertaining jaunt back in time with the likably mismatched duo.
  7. Reviewed by: Amy Biancolli
    May 24, 2012
    75
    If you're looking for cinema verite, look elsewhere. If you're looking for a fun, fizzy sequel in a franchise left for dead 10 years ago, have at it.
  8. Reviewed by: Shawn Levy
    May 24, 2012
    75
    So did the world need another "Men in Black"? No, not at all. But if there had to be one, then it's certainly a relief that it should be one as agreeable as this.
  9. Reviewed by: Rick Groen
    May 24, 2012
    75
    Delight, a modest yet palpable measure of the stuff, is restored.
  10. Reviewed by: Nathan Rabin
    May 23, 2012
    75
    The film is largely redeemed by an unexpected emotional resonance befitting a Steven Spielberg production.
  11. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    May 23, 2012
    75
    Although I liked the first "MiB" movie, I wasn't particularly looking forward to this belated sequel. But I had fun. It has an ingenious plot, bizarre monsters, audacious cliff-hanging, and you know what? A closing scene that adds a new and sort of touching dimension to the characters of J and K.
  12. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    May 29, 2012
    70
    Sonnenfeld's best movies function like elaborate Rube Goldberg contraptions, with visual gags popping out on a precise calibration of gears and springs, and Cohen's script, however derivative, is a stable apparatus.
  13. Reviewed by: Betsy Sharkey
    May 24, 2012
    70
    Good trippy fun.
  14. Reviewed by: Andrew Barker
    May 22, 2012
    70
    It's clear the filmmakers aren't simply expecting to coast on audience goodwill...Men in Black 3 is at its best when it simply owns its own absurdity.
  15. Reviewed by: Lawrence Toppman
    May 24, 2012
    63
    It's a brisk but restful breeze blowing through our heads, requiring no thought whatsoever – in fact, thoughts are an impediment to enjoying it – and touching us just a bit in unexpected ways.
  16. Reviewed by: Peter Travers
    May 24, 2012
    63
    The effects are cheese-whizzy fun, but it's the unexpected spark between Smith and Brolin that makes MiB3 primo summer fun. Way cool.
  17. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    May 24, 2012
    63
    It still has cool creatures and 1960s set design, and the 3-D is the best of the season, but if you try to remember the story or jokes, you'll find that you've been hit by a neuralyzer beam.
  18. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    May 23, 2012
    63
    Brolin's performance is funny, masterful, confident, and more than a little unsettling. If one human being can sample another, that's what's going on here. The rest of Men in Black 3 is about as good as one could hope for from an unnecessary sequel that's a decade late to the party.
  19. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    May 22, 2012
    63
    This only mildly bloated and convoluted action comedy has enough inspired moments to wipe out memories of the abysmal 2002 first sequel as surely as one of the black-suited heroes' neutralizer.
  20. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    May 24, 2012
    60
    Most wonderful of all is Josh Brolin as the young Agent K. It's so easy to believe that Brolin could turn into Jones, given a couple of decades.
  21. Reviewed by: J.R. Jones
    May 24, 2012
    60
    The comedy sci-fi franchise returns after a ten-year hiatus, with the same formula of respectably funny wisecracks and obsessively detailed space monsters.
  22. Reviewed by: Steve Rose
    May 24, 2012
    60
    It's by no means a triumph, but one of the enjoyable things about Men in Black has always been the malleable nature of its reality.
  23. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    May 24, 2012
    60
    A solidly entertaining summer movie is always welcome, even if it can't quite claim to be out of this world.
  24. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    May 23, 2012
    60
    The good news is that it's better than the second "Men in Black." The bad news is: not all that much. There are a couple of clever ideas, a few funny moments, a wealth of computer-generated special effects. But it's hollow at its core, and the asides have lost some of their spark.
  25. Reviewed by: Vadim Rizov
    May 22, 2012
    60
    Men in Black 3 is exactly what you'd expect: amiable mediocrity and nicely laid-back performances with pricy special effects plugging in the gaps where jokes should be.
  26. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    May 23, 2012
    58
    If this movie truly cost $375 million to produce and market (as the L.A. Times reported), the biggest chunk isn't on the screen.
  27. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    May 25, 2012
    50
    What we're left with is a thoroughly mediocre, shrug-generating disappointment -- and one that certainly doesn't feel like it should have cost more than a third of a billion dollars to make and market.
  28. 50
    The finished product is in a different league than the whompingly terrible Men in Black II - it hits its marks. But it's not inventive enough to overcome the overarching inertia, the palpable absence of passion.
  29. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    May 24, 2012
    50
    The younger man's personality is all the more startling for the skill and generosity with which Mr. Brolin creates a persuasively vital K while foreshadowing the grump to come. The script explains the change in elaborate detail, but the performance defies explanation; it's mysteriously marvelous.
  30. Reviewed by: John Semley
    May 23, 2012
    50
    More like an attempt to reenergize a franchise than rebottle the lightning that electrified the original.
  31. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    May 22, 2012
    40
    Despite such ubiquitous timidity, one can pluck out a few pleasing distractions here.
  32. Reviewed by: Neil Smith
    May 18, 2012
    40
    In a summer hardly starved of comic-book properties, this redundant extension of a series that ran out of gas a decade ago doesn't need a neuralyzer to be forgettable.
  33. Reviewed by: William Thomas
    May 18, 2012
    40
    Despite some good moments, Agents J, O and K are missing an E.
  34. Reviewed by: Michael O'Sullivan
    May 25, 2012
    38
    This third outing climaxes with a dark and melodramatic twist that, while adding a layer of nuance and back story that the previous two films never had, also feels wildly out of sync with its audience's expectations.
  35. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    May 24, 2012
    38
    Those who don't understand what it means for an actor to "sleepwalk" through a performance need only watch Men in Black III; there's no shortage of examples.
  36. Reviewed by: Mary Pols
    May 24, 2012
    30
    So creaky and out of touch it inspires pity. Its opening sequences are a near marvel of confusion, mayhem and embarrassments for its actors. If it was a person, you'd worry it had dementia.
  37. Reviewed by: Marc Savlov
    May 23, 2012
    30
    Less extraordinary and considerably more banal, given the sci-fi/comedy subject matter, is Men in Black 3's story, which jumps the ectomorphic shark in high style but with a deficit of actual belly laughs.
  38. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    May 24, 2012
    25
    Men in Black 3 is so dull and empty, it's the first movie that has ever made me think "Thank God this is in 3D."
User Score
6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 456 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 8 out of 132
  1. May 26, 2012
    8
    Extremely good movie. Awesome plot, good action, great acting, etc. Basically everything you want in a movie and it's Men In Black. Just as good as the first one and much better than the second. Definitely see this movie if you want a good time. Full Review »
  2. May 25, 2012
    10
    Fantastic movie. Almost as good as MIB1. It concentrates more on the J + K relationship than anything else. Will Smith & Tommy Lee Jones both play their parts like they were still filming MIB1 scenes they really stepped right back into their parts very well & have some strong onscreen chemistry. But the bonus here is Josh Brolin also has strong oncreen chemistry with Will Smith. Boris is the villain and let me just say he is one of the more memorable in many years & easily the most menacing MIB villain to date. Seriously creepy voice & makeup FX. Barry Sonnenfeld movies usually either work or sink. Happily MIB3 works very well especially considering the time travel plotline could easily have become tiresome instead it serves the story very well & there are some genuine surprises/twists regarding the characters & how they become who they are. There is quite an emotional climax to the movie which made me feel close to tears. For a modern big budget blockbuster (this does not have wall to wall VFX either just a few big set pieces) its quite some feat to make a jaded moviegoer like me feel something. I am very happy to report MIB3 does that in an unforced genuine way you will never see it coming either. For such a complex time travelling storyline the filmakers have told it very well in a straightforward fashion which anyone can follow. The 1969 period is very well handled & overall this movie just works & does not feel forced/artificial like most recent big budget movies. Here they go back to the past but it connect the characters in unique way. If you liked MIB1 this is almost as good which is quite frankly an amazing achievement in 2012. I cannot wait to see this again & again & buy the Bluray in 4 months please Sony!! Full Review »
  3. May 25, 2012
    10
    fantastic movie big steep up from its disappointing sequel. almost as better as the 1st one. action packed, funny enemies and lots of soft and deep moments Full Review »