Tag Archives: luc besson

Horrible Editing, Pretty Scenery Highlight ‘Transporter Refueled’

_The_Transporter_Refueled__posterIf the 85% humidity didn’t have me thinking it’s still August, the release of crap movies sure would have.

“The Transporter Refueled” is a reboot (I think? It has never really been confirmed if this is a reboot or prequel) of the Transporter franchise, but this time Ed Skrein gets behind the wheel to play the titular character instead of Jason Statham. Here the Transporter must help out four call girls who are looking to get revenge on a kingpin (or something along those lines; this film is a mess). Editor-turned-director Carmille Delamarre directs.

The last Transporter film was in 2008 and in the seven years since I haven’t heard a single person clamoring for another sequel. In fact, “Transporter 3” is often referred to as one of the worst edited action films of all-time, alongside “Taken 2.” So naturally it makes sense that they hire the guy who edited those two films to direct this one, right?

Like I said above, this movie is a mess and I have no idea where to start with it. I guess I’ll begin with how lazy and stupid it is. In the film’s opening scene, a bunch of men are shot in front of a group of prostitutes. The pimp then orders the girls to get back to work…with the massacred bodies still lying on the pavement. I’m not an expert in how ladies-of-the-night operate, but I have to imagine corpses are bad for business.

That scene takes place in 1995, and then we are transported (get it?) 15 years later, which after a quick calculation means it’s 2010. That would be fine and dandy, except characters use iPhone 6’s and drive 2015 vehicles. So either the movie was too lazy to add 15 to 1995, or they didn’t care about being accurate to the time period, both of which are sins.

The action in the film is at times fine, there are a few well-choreographed car chases, but those moments are diluted and ruined by constant slow-motion and quick edits. And when I say quick edits, I’m talking five shots in less than four second. The same type of edits you may find in, say, “Taken 2” or “Transporter 3.”

The man behind this film, and other gems such as the Taken trilogy, “The Family” and the worst film of last year, “Lucy,” is Luc Besson and he is the Adam Sandler of the action world. He continuously gives his friends jobs, and his films are usually awful, featuring near no plot, shoddy editing and villains with horrible accents and even worse motivations; and Besson makes no effort to try and change formula this time around.

The best part of “Refueled” was when Skrein is fighting a group of henchmen and he sticks a floatation ring around one of them and the bad guy yells, “you jerk!”. I laughed out loud. Obviously not the film’s intention, but most of the writing is that bad throughout.

I was never bored while watching “The Transporter Refueled” per se, but I was also almost never interested. I checked my phone at least five times and at one point even responded to a text, which I *never* do. The film is set in the incredibly beautiful Monaco, so every establishing shot is gorgeous, but honestly aside from that there isn’t much this movie does right. It’s not frustratingly awful like “Fantastic Four” or annoyingly bad like “Pixels,” but “The Transporter Refueled” fails to accomplish what it set out to do, whatever the heck that aspiration was.

Critics Rating: 4/10



‘Lucy’ All Dumb, No Fun

Lucy_(2014_film)_poster            Oh, boy.

Well, here goes nothing. In “Lucy”, Scarlett Johansson stars as the title character who begins to access more and more of her brain after accidently being injected with an experimental drug. Morgan Freeman costars as Luc Besson writes and directs.

The trailer for this film made it look like the film was going to be very, very bad; awkward dialogue paired with that awful Besson “humor” where random violence is supposed to be funny (because it’s a riot and totally hashtag relatable when someone shoots a cab driver for not speaking English in Taiwan, right?). Well rest easy because “Lucy” isn’t as bad as the commercials made it out to be; it’s worse.

I don’t think I have ever seen a movie try to be so smart, and then end up being so dumb. For the whole film, “Lucy” tries to ask questions while giving the impression that it has all the answers. It then pulls the rug out from under the audience in a messy (and moronic) climax. Seriously, by the time the film was wrapping up its painfully long 88 minute run time, I didn’t know what was going on. And you know you you’ve lost a filmgoer’s interest when I was questioning why a character still had a flip phone in the year 2014 instead of pondering what had just happened during the climax.

The film’s main interest point (at least in its own pretentious mind) is “oh boy, what’s going to happen when Lucy reaches 100% access of her brain?!” Only thing is, you don’t care. The more intelligent Lucy gets, the more dumb the movie gets. By the time Lucy has accessed 30% of her brain (instead of the normal person’s 10%) she can already throw other human beings with her mind. So do I really care to wait and find out what is going to happen when she reaches 70%? Spoiler: No, I don’t.

If this was a sitcom, it would be called “I Hate Lucy” (OK that was a lob down the middle). I just didn’t like much of anything in this movie. Besson does know how to shoot an action sequence, as demonstrated by the final 15 minutes being the only enjoyable part of “The Family”, and once again his climatic action scene is the highlight of the film. It’s fun enough when the guns are going off, but the fight isn’t enough to distract you from a plot that has become unintentionally hilarious.

“Lucy” is too moronic to be a smart sci-fi and too boring to constitute as dumb fun. The film doesn’t know what it wants to be, nor what message it wants to send. Really all I got out of it is “drugs are bad, m’kay?”. Johansson is an emotionless robot for most of the film, and nothing in the film is engaging. The film maintains that human beings use 10% of their brain; this film would be lucky if the people who made it exhumed anything over two.

Critics Rating: 3/10