Thursday, February 11, 2010

From Paris With Love

I actually saw this one last weekend but had no time at all to post the review. It tanked gloriously at the box office, which kind of surprised me. Yes this was a cheesy action flick with Mr. Saturday Night Fever hamming it up all the way-- BUT -- it was fun. I really thought this would have opened bigger. Director Pierre Morel (Taken) and Producer/Writer Luc Besson (The Professional, Fifth Element) tried to capture the fun craziness of Lethal Weapon and in my opinion they almost got there. Besson has always been known for his highly stylized action films. Morel has shown he can handle gritty down in the dirt suspense thrillers. Together, they made a passable and enjoyable actioner. The plot, however, was contrived and fairly predictable. I went with my Father-in-Law and he guessed one of the big twists almost instantly. Now if I were to compare it to some of those craptastic films of the 80's & 90's like Commando, Tango & Cash & Demolition Man, yeah I think it can hang in that crowd.Travolta has been in some hit or miss flicks of late but he really steals the show this time around as gonzo CIA agent Charlie Wax. Unfortunately the focus of the film is on the boring and wooden Jonathan Rhys Meyers. James Reece (Meyers) is the U.S. Ambassador to France's assistant. He also does low-level work for the CIA. He asks his handlers for more dangerous missions and they decide to grant his wish by giving him a partner, Charlie Wax. Until Charlie gets there the film kind of drags along. I have heard that Meyers is really great on the Tudors (haven't seen it as yet.) but so far in just about everything I've seen him in from Match Point to Mission Impossible III he just looks like he's reading his lines. I will admit he gets less boring as soon as the action gets going. And as a duo they are ok, not the kind of chemistry that hearkens back to Riggs and Murtaugh or Butch and Sundance but it does the job. Wax curses like a sailor and kills pretty much anyone that gets in his way while Reece looks befuddled and hunkers in the corner. First it seems they are after drug dealers and then it becomes a race against time to stop a terrorist bomb from killing the Secretary of State. The bad guys are 2-dimensional and even after seeing the thing I couldn't tell you who they were or what their organization was all about. They were an a-typical terrorist group that wanted to blow somebody up. Yes, sometimes a simple plot in an action flick is good but in this case it's just basically saying in caveman-ese, "Terrorist bad. Blow things up, good." Wax's insane body count can attest to this theory. In a nutshell it's a dumb action flick with some thrills and John Travolta hamming it up. Is it completely ludicrous? Absolutely, is it worth the ten or eleven bucks you'll throw down, eh, maybe see it on a Matinee show.

Grade 2 and 1/2 buckets

1 comment:

單存 said...