The Kings of Mykonos: Wog Boy 2
Synopsis: Things aren’t going so well for the ‘Wog Boy’, Steve (Nick Giannopoulos); he’s lost his true love (a ’67 Valiant Pacer) and all his assets because he trusted the wrong Italian. Steve’s best mate Frank (Vince Colosimo) has lost his touch with the ladies after a messy divorce. But fortune, as ever, favours the ‘Wog’ when Steve discovers that he has inherited a beach on the resort island of Mykonos from an uncle he never met – a beach worth millions...
An improvement on the original, though that's not saying much.
The Wog Boy milked the multicultural brand that Nick Giannopoulos and his collaborators had cultivated for decades (from Acropolis Now to Wogs Out of Work, Wogorama et al) and they laughed all the way to the bank on its proceeds. In spite of a nonsensical plot structure and a series of woeful gags about compo claims and randy politicians, the film filled a niche and set records in box office attendance for Australian films. Its success was a boon for multicultural storytelling, even if its witless gags were as old as religion.
Ten years on, Giannopoulos has resurrected his Greek everyman shtick to have another crack at it, with The Kings of Mykonos: Wog Boy 2.
The plot – such as it is – revolves around legacy and entitlement and ships Giannopoulos’ fast-talking Steve Karamitsis off to the mother country to stake his claim to a beachfront property in Mykonos. Steve’s oversexed sidekick Frank (Vince Colosimo, one of the few throwbacks to the original film) tags along in a bid to break a dry spell. Steve and Frank land in a maelstrom of Machiavellian corporate tactics and, since this is the kind of film where the villains reveal their ulterior motives without prompting, the good guys have ample time to foil their plans and move in on their women.
A running gag paints Mykonians as blissfully ignorant of the sustainability of their “Greekonomy”, which is underpinned by entrenched graft and nepotism. Call it foresight, dumb luck or socio-economic serendipity, but Kings of Mykonos manages to tap the zeitgeist in showing up some of the root causes of (modern) Greece’s path to ruin.
Director Peter Andrikidis keeps things moving at a steady pace (and refreshingly, maintains a high degree of in-language content for a broad studio comedy), though he betrays his TV roots with an over-reliance on beauty shots – and shots of beauties – as default entry points to the action. Incidentally, Mykonos’ elasticised work ethic mustn’t extend to its helicopter pilots, as the endless stream of aerial establishing shots suggest that they clocked up some serious air time during the film’s production.
If anything good has come of the non-Wog-related misfire The Wannabes (another half-baked idea that Giannopoulos inflicted on moviegoers in the intervening years) it seems the golden Greek has learned to rein in his worst excesses (or has teamed with people who know how to minimise them). Although Wog Boy 2’s plot is flimsy (and its jokes the comic equivalent of feta), the execution is much, much slicker than the previous effort.
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