‘Save the World. Get the Girl. Pass Math.’ The poster tagline for this pint-sized 007 (003 and a half?) sums up this well-meaning adventure, which was the first outing for Muniz as Agent Cody Banks. Cody is part of a government secret-agent programme that recruits teens and allows them to drive cool cars, carry great gizmos and fight bad guys when they aren’t studying. For his first assignment, Cody has to go undercover at a prep school and befriend young Natalie (Duff) in order to get close to her boffin father, who is devising some micro-robots that bad guys want to use as a weapon.
This isn’t hilariously funny, but it’s cute nonetheless, especially in scenes when Cody has to charm Natalie, despite being painfully awkward and shy around girls. Boys will like the gadgets, girls will like the romance, and while grown-ups would rather be watching the real James Bond rather than this unsubtle teen equivalent, they’ll still chuckle at a few of the gags.
Is Agent Cody Banks suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...
The climax is quite tense but nothing that should faze the target tween audience.