Making the Grades
Agent Cody Banks (Frankie Muniz) is growing up. At the ripe old age of 16, he's left behind the locker room nonsense from his first film and taken on a more sophisticated front as a clarinet player in an international youth orchestra. But his short stint in the high school band wasn't enough to prepare him to perform with this high caliber group of musical geniuses.
Thankfully, the CIA is as astute at making instruments that play themselves as they are at creating disguised weapons, secret listening devices and exploding breath mints.
Arriving in London straight from his summer spy camp, Cody meets the gifted students he will be staying with at the elite boarding house owned by Lord Kenworth (James Faulkner) and his wife, Jo (Anna Chancellor). Lady Kenworth, a former operatic singer, is overseeing the orchestra's performance before the Queen, but her husband appears to have connections with an AWOL operative who's become disgruntled with his posting as camp director for the junior spy program.
Wanting to get back at the CIA for sending him to baby-sit, Agent Diaz (Keith Allen) steals an experimental mind control program from a secret lab hidden beneath the campground. With the plans in his possession, Diaz approaches Lord Kenworth to help him take over the brains of world leaders at an upcoming political summit.
Cody's assignment is to discover the nitty-gritty details behind the men's scheme and to keep it from being implemented. Working on the case with the teenaged mole is his new ?handler,? Agent Derek Bowman (Anthony Anderson), and his driver Kumar (Rod Silvers). After messing up on a previous case, Derek wants to prove to the CIA director (Keith David) that he's still a valuable player in the organization. Cooking up a good helping of hominy and grits for the performers, Derek hangs out in the kitchen while Cody listens in on a meeting between his host and the errant spy.
The operation hits a sour note when Diaz realizes that Cody is onto him. Using his tactical experience from summer camp, Diaz tries to neutralize his former trainee. Now the only hope for the two American infiltrators may have to come from the Brit's own covert operations unit.
Fortunately, families who enjoyed the previous adventures of this James Bond wanna-be will likely not be disappointed by his return. With even less language and innuendo concerns than the first film, Agent Cody Banks 2: Destination London is packed with action sequences, a few potty jokes and a suitcase full of cool tools. It's also loaded with product placements ranging from clothing lines to ketchup.
Cody Banks may be the new poster boy for aspiring spies but his movie often proves to be a ready-made advertisement, especially for travel agencies eager to pick up tourists headed for European destinations.
Discussion Ideas After The Movie
Teaching ideas and topics to discuss about Agent Cody Banks 2: Destination London (2004).
Product placement can net big returns for advertisers who get their merchandise in the movies. How many brands can you find showcased in this film? (We found well over a dozen.) Do these 0x201Ccommercials0x201D have any effect on viewers?
What ethnic and cultural groups were portrayed in this movie? Were these depictions positive or negative? How well did the musicians from different countries work together?