After many successful years as a top-notch superspy, Bob Ho (Jackie Chan) decides to give up espionage to spend more time with his next-door neighbour and girlfriend Gillian (Amber Valetta). With his perilous career behind him, however, Bob's troubles are far from over as he faces his toughest mission yet: winning over Gillian's three high-spirited kids. When Gillian goes away for a few days, all hell breaks loose when one of her brood accidently downloads a top-secret formula, leading Bob's arch-nemesis, a Russian spy named Poldark (Magnús Scheving), to move in for the kill. As Bob struggles to look after the trio of tiny terrors, he must also foil Poldark's plans, but soon discovers that in the world of espionage, nobody can be trusted.
The Spy Next Door relies almost entirely on Chan's mugging and trademark pratfalls, despite the fact that the 56-year-old actor is clearly starting to struggle with stunts. Directed by the man behind The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas and Jingle All The Way, Levant's film was never going to be a hit with the critics, but kids should enjoy its wacky charms.
Worth looking out for is Billy Ray Cyrus as Bob's spy ally Colton James, the dad of megastar Miley delivering the best line in the film by far, "Don't get married. Just find some woman that you're gonna hate in five years, and give her your house". Elsewhere it's all bland and breezy kids' fare that should engage youngsters, especially those who enjoyed G-Force, and might just inspire grown-ups to break into their Police Story DVDs for some classic Chan action.