Advertisement

Movie Mom

Movie Mom

The Transporter

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
Profanity:Very strong language
Nudity/Sex:Non-explicit sexual situation
Alcohol/Drugs:Drinking and smoking
Violence/Scariness:Action-style violence, lots of shooting, characters killed
Diversity Issues:Asian female character is strong, brave, and smart
Movie Release Date:2002
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
Profanity: Very strong language
Nudity/Sex: Non-explicit sexual situation
Alcohol/Drugs: Drinking and smoking
Violence/Scariness: Action-style violence, lots of shooting, characters killed
Diversity Issues: Asian female character is strong, brave, and smart
Movie Release Date: 2002

Pure popcorn pleasure, this is a heady combination that is half testosterone, half attitude, and all action. “The Transporter” really delivers.

Don’t pay much attention to the plot – no one connected to the movie does. Just pay attention to the chases and explosions, staged with style by Corey Yuen, a veteran Hong Kong actor/director and co-written by Luc Besson, whose wildly imaginative visuals ignited “The Fifth Element” and other films.

Together, they have produced a straight shot of movie adrenaline. Jason Statham (best known for his appearances in tough-guy movies “Snatch” and “Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels”), plays Frank, a former military man who now serves as a “transporter.” He will deliver anything from one place to another, as long as his price and conditions are met. The price is high. The conditions are these: no names on either side, no changes to the deal once it’s set, and no looking into the package. The movie kicks off with a heart-thumping chase scene as Frank transports three bank robbers and their swag (though he won’t budge until they get rid of a fourth robber who wasn’t part of the deal). We see that Frank is both a meticulous planner and fearless under pressure, whether he is being chased by dozens of cops or penetratingly questioned by just one smart one.

Then Frank takes on another job and for once he breaks one of the rules. He looks in the package he is transporting and finds a young woman named Lai (Shu Qi). If he hesitates about delivering her to her destination, it is only briefly, because he takes her to the drop-off and accepts another job from the man who receives her. It is only when that package turns out to be a bomb intended to kill Frank that he returns to retrieve Li and extract some revenge.

Frank starts to care which side he’s on and he starts to care about Li, then thinks he can’t trust her, then learns he really can. No surprises with the story – this is straight out of screenwriting 101. But there are some very cool surprises in the chases and explosions as Frank and Li take on the bad guys and the bad guys chase after them.

Statham is a fine action hero, handling kick-boxing and dialogue with wit, grace, and style. Qi, who learned English (or some English, anyway) to take on the role, has a fresh, appealing presence, and François Berléand is superb as the policeman caught between suspecting Frank and admiring him. The bad guys played by Matt Schulze and Ric Young are not as interesting as they could be, but the movie moves so fast you won’t have much time to think about it.

Parents should know that the movie features intense, non-stop peril and action violence, with massive destruction of property. Many people are killed. Characters drink and smoke and use very strong language. In the coming attraction and commercial, Lai tells Frank he is in “deep trouble.” The word in the movie is not “trouble.”

Families who see this movie should talk about how Frank appears once to have been an idealist; what made him decide not to try to work to make things better any more? Why did the policeman let Frank go after the bad guys instead of sending the cops? What do you think Frank and Lai will do next? What makes this chase and explosion movie better than so many others?

Families who enjoy this movie will also enjoy “Snatch” and “The Fifth Element” as well as Hong Kong kick-boxing classics like “A Better Tomorrow” and “Once Upon a Time in China” (all very violent).

Previous Posts

Worst Accents in Movies
Thanks to Indiewire for including me in this great rundown of the all-time worst movie accents. Critics vented frustration and fury, many picking Quentin Tarantino and Dick van Dyke, but I went with two actors who played Robin ...

posted 2:13:18pm Aug. 28, 2015 | read full post »

Grandma
Lily Tomlin is cranky, feisty, tough, and utterly irresistible in this story of a grandmother who has to visit past decisions about her own life in order ...

posted 5:50:55pm Aug. 27, 2015 | read full post »

We Are Your Friends
Director Max Joseph brings some of the "Catfish" sensibility to "We Are Your Friends," with an intimate, documentary feel and a storyline ...

posted 5:35:22pm Aug. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Z for Zachariah
In 1959, a movie called The World, The Flesh And The Devil imagined a post-apocalyptic world with three surviving humans. In the words of the 1960's television series, "The Mod Squad," they could be described as "one black, one white, one ...

posted 5:31:48pm Aug. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Being Evel
Evel Knievel was an international celebrity in the 1960's-70's, known for three things: showmanship, stunts that succeeded, and stunts that failed. He was recognized for jumping over 19 cars in his motorcycle, for crash-landing after trying to ...

posted 5:13:51pm Aug. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.