Directed by Robert Rodriguez, starring Daryl Sabara, Alexa Vega, Ricardo Montalban, Sylvester Stallone, Mike Judge, Salma Hayek, Ryan Pinkston, Robert Vito, Bobby Edner, Courtney Jines, Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino, Alan Cumming, George Clooney, Elijah Wood, Bill Paxton and Steve Buscemi.

It may sound like a line straight out of the mouth of one of its stars, Ricardo Montalban, but all good things must come to an end. And with the title of his third 'Spy Kids' pic, it seems that director Robert Rodriguez knows when it's time to move on. There have been plenty of laughs and great ideas along the way, two cool stars, loads of cameos and - from the first two movies alone - $271m at the box office. The third will take plenty too even though - with 3D glasses on or off - it doesn't measure up to its predecessors.

This instalment finds Juni (Sabara) as a private eye lured back into the spy game to rescue his sister Carmen (Vega). Carmen is stuck in a video game created by the Toymaker (Stallone), a former agent who now wants to enslave young minds through his latest creation. Freeing Carmen means Juni needs a new partner - not Floop (Cummings), Dinky Winks (Paxton), Romero (Buscemi) or former boss-turned president Devlin (Clooney) from previous adventures but his grandfather (Montalban), a man with some history to settle with the Toymaker.

If a hybrid of 'Tron' and 50's B-Movies sounds like too much of a headwreck, it's better you don't end up in the position of having to put on the 3D glasses. 15 minutes in, the sign instructing you to don visual battlegear starts flashing and for an almost an hour 'Spy Kids 3D' throws everything bar the script at the screen. But while Rodriguez has plenty of special effects, he also has a 1D script. If children haven't seen the first two films, that's probably the best place to start because here the visual novelty wears off long before the final showdown. Maybe if Rodriguez had another year to play around with this could have been the perfect swansong, instead he's left his faithful with more sighs than smiles.

Harry Guerin