Really bad movie but the guy with his robots makes it fun! A classic!
The funniest darn thing I've ever seen.
Lord Chimp | Monkey World | 02/10/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'm a huge fan of these guys. The team of writers for this show are so talented it's sick. I was a huge fan when MST3K was on TV, and I have a bunch of the episodes on tape. Of all of them, this is the one I return to most.The wonderful movie for Joel's farewell episode is Mitchell, some kind of lame cop-action-thing with a stupid plot revolving around drugs and prostitutes and Joe Don Baker's hideous acting. Perfect ammunition for Joel & co. to unleash one of the finest barrages of jokes in the entire series! You can tell the writers had fun with this movie. So much of it lends itself to insult: Joe Don Baker acting like he suffers from acute retardation; Mitchell's drinking problem; Mitchell's face; Mitchell's disturbing sexual relationship with his prostitute; Mitchell's big belly; Mitchell's driving skills; Mitchell's drinking problem; Mitchell shooting guns; Mitchell fighting; Mitchell's theme song; Mitchell trying to be tough...it goes on. This one will have you laughing yourself into a seizure every few seconds. The jokes come so fast that it's impossible to take it all in. I've seen this episode about a dozen times over the years but I still hear things I missed before.Buy it and smile."
MST3K's Holiest of Holies
Joseph Murphy | 02/21/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Episodes of MST3K come in two varieties: 1. Joel (Mike) and the 'bots are subjected to a film devoid of basic cinematic competence (poor production, no script, hapless actors) 2. Joel (Mike) and the 'bots take merciless aim at one character in the movie (which looks and feels like a real movie) and slice him/her to bits.We have, here, probably the greatest example of #2. When we first see the slothful Mitchell waking up in the backseat of a squad car, the boys let it rip (Joel: "Here's our hero, ladies and gentlemen." Tom: "Does anyone have a moist towelette?") and it just does *not* let up until Mitchell "breaks in" to his own apartment and rips Linda Evans out of bed as she sleeps ("Yanni? Is that you?"). God, I love it. I've seen it hundreds of times and it's STILL GOOD!If you've been put off by MSTs as described in #1 above ("Manos: The Hands of Fate" comes to mind), please give it another chance with Mitchell. You'll never look at Joe Don the same, even if he does a cute cameo in "Reality Bites" as Winona Ryder's father."
nigel_tufnel | Lincoln, Nebraska | 06/13/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Mitchell" was Joel Hodgson's farewell to the SOL, the 'Bots, Frank and Forrester, and *sniff* his legion of fans. But what a way to end his run, huh? This is the full-tilt, 360-degree, last-second, game-winning slam-dunk of an episode, a guaranteed laugh riot that I can still watch again and again.What hasn't been said about this movie? Well, for one thing, I don't know if any one has commented on how truly embarrassed Martin Balsam looks throughout. Every moment of his performance has the feel of a tacit apology as he tries to make silk purses out of the stockyards of sows' ears that he was handed by the screenwriters. He did it for the money, and lets the audience know it in scene after scene. He was a gifted actor, too often wasted in dreck like this. Yet he comes off infinitely better than the star of the show, one Joe Don Baker. Understand that if you limit Baker's screen time in most movies, as has been done by smarter filmmakers than these, he's not nearly as repulsive as he is here. But director Andrew McLaglen insists on having him in virtually every scene, with lots of close-ups of Baker's beefy face to accentuate...exactly what again? This is pure white-sploitation, a 'Shaft' meets 'Dirty Harry' without either of those films' energies or convictions. Think about it. Who is Mitchell? He's a tough supercop who can't stand the confining rules of 'the system', and by the way, he's also an irresistible stud. One of those guys again? Like the character, the movie is a wasteful thud, too slow to be exciting, too cheap-looking to be flashy. That's what our boys exploit--the intrinsic weaknesses of the lame story and the truly dreadful protagonist that isn't even likable as an anti-hero. Meanwhile, the out-of-theater story kicks into gear immediately as Gypsy (voiced by Jim Mallon) overhears Frank and Forrester (Frank Conniff and Trace Beaulieu) discussing the elimination of a 'be-jumpsuited fool', whom Gypsy assumes to be the beloved Joel Robinson (Joel Hodgson), friend and human creator. This scene is cleverly played as a parody of a scene in "2001" as the scene cuts from Gypsy watching 'the Mads' to close-ups of the duo having a their discussion, which the audience can tell is actually about a temp Frank hired, Mike Nelson (played by Mike Nelson). Gypsy leaps into action to figure out how to get Joel off the ship ("Charter flight? No."), while Crow (Beaulieu) and Tom Servo (Kevin Murphy) are oblivious as usual to Gypsy's problems. Finally a solution is reached, thanks to Mike--and the slow-witted Frank (Mike needs the keys to a control panel to gain control of the ship's computers, so he simply asks for them: "Frank, can I borrow your keys?" "Okay." And when Frank wonders why Mike wanted the keys, Mike says it's because he left his lights on. And when Frank counters that he doesn't own a car, Mike asks him why he lent him the keys in the first place. Which leaves Frank confused and apologetic.). Joel escapes in the aptly-named "Deux Ex Machina" hidden in a box of the Spam-like Hamdingers, lands in the Australian Outback and never returns. (Except for a marvelous appearance in Episode 1001, not available on video.) Thankfully for their experiment and for the show, 'the Mads' decide to bring the temp on to their staff full-time, whether he likes it or not. Welcome aboard, Mike.The day I brought this tape home for my younger siblings to watch, my dad told me something I couldn't possibly believe. I had to ask him to speak more slowly and clearly, and into my good ear, in order to catch it. The old man paid money to see this movie. In a theater. Poor guy."
Andrew S. Rogers | Stamford, Connecticut | 12/04/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you took Clint Eastwood's Harry Callahan and made him overweight, unhygienic, twice as rude, and only about two-thirds as good a cop, you'd have a pretty good approximation of Joe Don Baker's Mitchell, one of the most unattractive movie 'heroes' in all of MSTie-dom (and that's saying a lot).When life gives you lemonade, a film like 'Mitchell' is enough to turn it back into lemons again. Joel and The Bots (J&TB) do a great job giving this turkey the riffing it deserves, but the episode is bittersweet, since it's Joel's final appearance on the Satellite of Love (save for a cameo in one of the Sci-Fi Channel episodes)."Mitchell' and the episode that followed, 'The Brain that Wouldn't Die' are must-haves for MSTies because of their place in the history of the series. But this episode is also a great performance in its own right, and one you'll watch over and over again -- in spite of the unpleasantness surrounding Joe Don Baker and some baby oil."
We want Mitchell 2: Electric Boogaloo
Echo | Western Hemisphere | 11/22/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This was the first MST3K I ever watched (a pity I found it so late since I could never stand Comedy Central). Many determined MSTies prefer "Manos: The Hands of Fate" as the quintessential MST3K episode, but I'm partial to "Mitchell".My god, but this MSTed movie is hysterical! "Mitchell" was a typical mid-70s detective TV movie (I suspect it was a failed pilot), complete w/ big Kojak-style American cars, painfully cheesy dialog, and gratuitous lapels. It cries out for the MST3K treatment because it takes itself so seriously.See: -the world's slowest car chase!
-a menacing Merlin Olsen!
-a classic John Saxon villain nonperformance!
-Joe Don Baker + Linda Evans + a bottle of baby oil = the most disturbing scene ever committed to film!
-finally, sadly, Joel Hodgson's graceful exit from the series via a convenient box of hamdingers.Rumor has it that Joe Don Baker was furious at the MST3K treatment of this meisterwerk. I can understand it, I guess...he was sort of a 1970s quasiserious character actor. JDB is truly a better actor when he satirizes his own slobby character, for example in "Goldeneye" and "Tomorrow Never Dies".Loosen up, JD, you're not that bad but for god's sake NEVER play it straight again.Comedy Central eventually cancelled MST3K, which returned it to its normal nonfunny mode. "Mitchell" is a gem, and I'm delighted to see it preserved on DVD."