Without anywhere near as much bad dialog and goofiness as "XXX", "The Transporter" shares a lot with this summers leading action movie. This time our beefy bald hero is played by Jason Statham last seen shooting thugs in "Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels". His absurd background story is that he's a retired Special Forces agent who now makes his living as a "Transporter" picking up and delivering special packages for whoever can pay the price and follow his rules. And of course this movie is all about breaking rules and blowing things up doing it.
Scripted and produced by Luc Beeson I was a bit disappointed with the awkward character development in "The Transporter". Unlike Bessons earlier films, such as "La Femme Nikita" or "The Professional" which had people you cared about, "the Transporter" leaves you cold. The only human bond that anyone in "The Transporter" seems to have is between our hero and the local police detective who respect each other enough to get along despite being on opposite sides of the law.
The movies sex interest is played by the exotic Shu Qi, who begins the romantic relationship with our hero between duct tape and a straw, as "The Transporter" breaks his own rules, and he opens the package carrying the kidnapped girl in the trunk of his car. How or why they fall in lust is anyone's guess but she sure does look cute in her American themed swish so who cares? As long as it doesn't interfere with the explosive action, our hero could fall for a dolled up mackerel.
"The Transporter" definitely has an international audience in mind. Its hip-hop not rock and roll, its modern German cars not American muscle classics. The villains are a generic nondescript portrayal of multi-national bad guys everywhere. They dress in flash suits and drive sleek euro cars like madmen through an unidentifiable section of the Mediterranean.
The Transporter is an adrenalin friendly action movie designed to entertain muscle head action fans everywhere. The opening fifteen-minute car ride alone delivers on the kind of adrenalin thrill ride you paid for. By midway through the movie you'll be thumbing for your Playstation controller so you could get in on all the non-stop action.
So as with "XXX", check your brain at the door and plow through "The Transporter" at full speed. By the end you'll be amped and ready to drive fast and take chances and maybe have a soda from the movies sponsor. As for me, I'm rushing home to the tune the springs of my online racecar so I can cruise like "The Transporter" against virtual people not real ones.
For Movie Magazine this is Purple.
© 2002 - Purple - Air Date: 10/2/02
France - 2002