Tag Archives: Jason Statham

My Thoughts on: Transporter 3 (2008)

*warning, minor spoilers for Transporter 3

All too quickly I reached the end of the original Transporter trilogy with Transporter 3. Unlike the other two, I went into this one with a warning. I’d been told by more than a few people that I should avoid this film since it was a step down from Transporter 2. With that thought in mind, I dove in to the film…and was pleasantly surprised.

Perhaps I please far too easily, but I enjoyed Transporter 3. The action has moved back to Europe, Statham is on point as always, and this third entry presents a dangerous wrinkle to the “transport the package from point A to point B” premise that has defined the series. Namely, our favorite transporter has to deal with getting the job done with a powerful explosive strapped to his wrist (a matching one on the package as well), one that will detonate if he gets too far away from the car. It’s already been established that being a transporter is a dangerous occupation, but now Frank Martin has to do his job while being conscious at all times of his proximity to the car, because if he’s not careful he can go BOOM. It’s an ingenious plot device, because it’s easy to forget it until it becomes relevant and then you’re like “Oh sh*t the bomb!”

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Another thing I liked about Transporter 3 is watching Frank deal with his latest “package” i.e. Valentina (Natalya Rudakova). In some ways, the interaction reminds me of  the interplay between Frank and Lai in the original film (just with more conversation), as Valentina strains Frank’s patience to the absolute limit (a notable example being when she gets high right before a car chase ensues). But one part of the interaction between Frank and Valentina that bothers me is how quickly they appear to develop a relationship. Ever since I was clued in to how unrealistic this is, seeing this in a film has always bothered me. However, even though it does bother me, it doesn’t stop me from enjoying the film, which is otherwise really good.

One last thing that bothers me in this film is some of the things that Frank does with the car. Now, I admit I don’t know too much about cars, but to me it seems highly unlikely that a car could be made to run again (just like that) after falling into a lake. And the odds of a vehicle being able to land on top of a moving train…I know it’s a movie and all, but something about that scene bothered me, so I just wanted to mention it.

Even though this film is 11 years old, I would be more than happy to see Jason Statham play the role of Frank Martin again (let’s just forget the reboot ever happened). Let me know what you think about Transporter 3 in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

My Thoughts on: Transporter 2 (2005)

My Thoughts on: The Transporter (2002)

Film Reviews

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My Thoughts on: Transporter 2 (2005)

I’ll admit to raising an eyebrow when I heard that Transporter 2 was considered by many to be superior to the original Transporter film. But after sitting down and watching it, I have to agree that those critics might have a point. Transporter 2 is a lot of fun to watch, and it definitely takes the action much farther than the original film did.

But admitting it’s the superior film? Hmmmm, I’m still not sure about that.

First let’s start with the basics: Transporter 2 goes the route of most sequels by putting a twist on the original premise. Instead of transporting packages for anonymous buyers, Frank Martin has been working for the last month as a personal driver for a family, taking their young son back and forth from school. It seems innocent enough, but given Frank Martin is involved in the situation, it doesn’t take long for things to go sideways.

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One area in which Transporter 2 unquestionably excels is in the action. As great as the fight scenes in the original film are, they’re taken to the next level in this one. And some of the things that Frank does with that car of his just aren’t human (in fact, if I’m honest, at times it pushed my suspension of disbelief). No, in terms of action, Transporter 2 is a lot of fun.

Where I take issue with this film comes in the depiction of Lola, one of the main antagonists of the film. Lola is a completely psychotic gun-wielding killer, whose wardrobe is so scanty that it screams “mid-2000s fan service” from beginning to end. On one level, I get why she’s presented this way: the idea is that Lola is so crazy she just doesn’t give a f*ck and will dress however she wants, society be damned. But on the other hand, every time I see her this way it made me cringe. If I could alter one thing in this film, it would be her.

Other than that quibble, I suppose Transporter 2 really is superior to the original, except for that ending. I feel kind of bad for Frank in the end, but then I suppose he couldn’t be who he is if the film ended any other way. I also like how Inspector Tarconi is worked into the story. With the change of locale I didn’t think we’d see the dear inspector, but it worked out perfectly.

Overall, I enjoyed this film very much. Let me know what you think about Transporter 2 in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

My Thoughts on: Transporter 3 (2008)

My Thoughts on: The Transporter (2002)

Film Reviews

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My Thoughts on: The Transporter (2002)

I actually remember the commercials advertising The Transporter (many many moons ago, when I was just a wee middle school student). It stuck out to me because it listed the rules the Transporter goes by: 1) Never Change the Deal; 2) No Names, and 3) Never Open the Package.  I had no idea what the film was really about, but I remember being curious about a character who likes to follow their own set of rules (my own brain works in a similar way). Last night, 17 long years later, I finally got to see the film for myself (thanks Hulu!) and oh my goodness. I have been missing out haven’t I?

The Transporter, as the title implies, follows professional transporter Frank Martin (Jason Statham), who will deliver anything to anywhere, provided the aforementioned rules are followed. Inevitably, with a system like this, the rules are broken and Martin’s life is turned upside down when he becomes mixed up in some major criminal dealings.

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This film is a wild ride to say the very least. From the opening car chase (which is actually very funny, I loved watching how he treated those robbers), to the final chase, I loved every minute of it. There is one thing I noticed though: I’m not sure if this was because of the director, or because this was relatively early in Statham’s career, but this isn’t quite the Jason Statham I’m used to watching, if that makes sense. Oh the fight scenes are what I expected (and the oil fight is insane), but the way he talks and acts…it’s just different. I’m not saying it’s bad, it’s just different. Also, this is yet another film where Statham still has hair and it is so weird to see him with hair.

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And speaking of the fight scenes, they’re nuts but in a good way! I’ve yet to see a movie that does not involve Statham showing off his awesome fighting skills, and this film is no exception. The previously mentioned oil fight was crazy to watch, though I read afterward that they had to use molasses for that scene and it had to have been a pain and  a half to clean up afterward. (also, one last thought, I was genuinely upset when that house got blown up, that was a really nice house!)

I’m so glad I watched The Transporter at long last, Transporter 2 and 3 have now jumped to the top of my watch list, and I can’t wait to check out even more of Jason Statham’s filmography. Let me know what you think about The Transporter in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

My Thoughts on: Transporter 3 (2008)

My Thoughts on: Transporter 2 (2005)

Film Reviews

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My Thoughts on: Furious 7 (2015)

Believe it or not, Furious 7 is only the second film I’ve seen in the entire Fast & Furious series (Hobbs & Shaw, being a spin-off, technically doesn’t count). I didn’t pay the series any mind until my senior year of college, when I got to see Fast Five at a screening that was free for college students. I was nearly hooked into the series then, but the stress of finishing my degree distracted me enough that I forgot about the series all over again (Paul Walker’s tragic death in 2013 did not help). That’s how things stayed until just recently, when I watched Hobbs & Shaw, remembered that the duo had appeared (more or less) in several Fast & Furious films prior to the spin-off, and decided to find out what I was missing.

And that’s basically how i found myself watching Furious 7 for the first time ever last night. By rights, I should have watched Fast & Furious 6 first, since that’s where we meet Owen Shaw (and without him we never would’ve met Deckard Shaw). But…I was really impatient to get to Jason Statham’s involvement in the series, so I skipped ahead.

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To put it mildly, Furious 7 is an insane film, with stunts that make Fast Five look tame in comparison. I’m still trying to work out how a crew of street racers and thieves got involved in international espionage (that IS what this is, right?), but thankfully the story is so over the top that it just works. The plot largely revolves around Dom seeking revenge on Deckard Shaw for killing Han and nearly killing himself, Mia, Brian, and their young son Jack. Deckard, for his part, wants revenge on the crew for nearly killing his brother Owen. Jason Statham fits into the story perfectly, and I really believe that adding him in raises the story to a whole different level.

I also have to say, that while I love all of the stunts in this film, I do understand why people are saying the franchise is seriously pushing the limits of believability (and I haven’t even seen Fate of the Furious yet). Case in point, that entire sequence where the expensive supercar flies/drops/jumps between skyscrapers in Abu Dhabi. It looks really cool but at the exact same time there’s a voice in the back of my head saying “Yea, right, like that could totally ever happen.” Fortunately, I love crazy action scenes, so I don’t let it bother me too much.

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No review would be complete without addressing how the film bids farewell to Paul Walker. I remember when the news of his death came out, and at the time I legitimately thought that was the end of this film. After all, Brian is so important to the story, how could you possibly go on without him? Well, they found a way, and it’s one of the best character send-offs I’ve ever seen that doesn’t involve outright killing the character off. The digital effects are so good, if I hadn’t read some trivia that reveals where and how some of the footage was manipulated, I probably wouldn’t have known which scenes were and which scenes weren’t (except for the beach scene and the ending of course). And that ending…I can’t imagine a more fitting end than having Brian drive off into the sunset (in an all-white car no less).  I freely admit I was crying when the credits finally rolled.

Furious 7 is really fun to watch, and I may or may not be kicking myself for not seeing it in theaters. Let me know what you think about Furious 7 in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

My Thoughts on: Fast Five (2011)

My Thoughts on: The Fate of the Furious (2017)

My Thoughts on: Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw (2019)

Film Reviews

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My Thoughts on: Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw (2019)

*warning, minor spoilers for Hobbs & Shaw below

I’ve literally been waiting all summer to check this movie out. I initially wasn’t on board with it at all (even though I’ve only seen Fast Five, I still didn’t think Fast & Furious needed a spin-off), but then I saw the first trailer and I was all in. As the title implies, Hobbs & Shaw sees Luke Hobbs (Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson) and Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) forced to team up to save the world from a dangerous super-virus. Oh, and there’s also Shaw’s sister Hattie (Vanessa Kirby) in the mix, not to mention a genetically-enhanced super soldier (Idris Elba), the latter also being after the virus.

Overall, I really did enjoy Hobbs & Shaw. As I suspected, the film is mostly an over-the-top action flick, with Hobbs and Shaw at the center of it all. There are fights, explosions, just enough plot to satisfy my brain, and of course, the undeniable chemistry between Johnson and Statham that makes it all work. Seriously, how were these two not paired in a movie sooner? (Yes, I know about them being in that Fast & Furious movie together, but that’s beside the point). I found it hysterically funny to watch these two square up to each other, they’re both alpha males who are definitely not used to working with anyone, let alone another alpha. On that basis alone, I look forward to the sequel that was obviously being set up at the end of the film.

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While highly enjoyable, Hobbs & Shaw is far from perfect. For example, I loved most of the last act that was set on Samoa, once the action got going anyway. But am I the only one who thought the family scene didn’t quiet work? The feeling didn’t last long, since the film almost never slows down the action, but still, that part could’ve been done better. The final fight scene itself was insane (even if it did strain my suspension of disbelief just slightly). I know this is a movie and all, but you can’t seriously tell me that Hobbs and Shaw went through all of THAT (just in the finale alone), without having serious health issues immediately afterward. Maybe I’m nitpicking but that bothered me a little. Oh, and speaking of the finale, I found the slow-motion punch shots to be really unnecessary. I *think* I get what they were going for, but it really does come across as silly.

Can’t finish a review of this film without talking about Idris Elba; he was fantastic! Any scene he’s in, I loved. Honestly, I wish we could’ve gotten more of his character, or at least more time for his character to develop, I think he had the ability to be quite nuanced if we could’ve learned more about him. (Also, I love his motorcycle).

Oh, one last thought. Without giving too much away (hopefully), I think I know who that mysterious voice at the end belongs to. If you think you know too, please don’t say anything in the comments, for now let’s just keep it to ourselves, we’ll find out soon enough if the theory is correct. (And on one further point, I’m very glad I made sure to watch Game of Thrones when the season aired, or a certain line would have royally pissed me off.)

Let me know what you think about Hobbs & Shaw in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

My Thoughts on: Fast Five (2011)

My Thoughts on: Furious 7 (2015)

My Thoughts on: The Fate of the Furious (2017)

Film Reviews

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My Thoughts on: The Italian Job (2003)

I’ve been told for years that The Italian Job is a film that I should see, and last night I finally got around to seeing it. First thing I have to say is, I am so glad I did, because The Italian Job is a great movie! It does show its age here and there (the dated technology, the fact that the film has opening credits) but overall it holds up pretty well for a film that’s 16 years old.

If you’re not familiar, The Italian Job is loosely (very loosely) based on the 1969 film of the same name, and follows a tight-knit group of thieves as they seek vengeance after a gold heist in Venice goes sideways. The film stars Mark Wahlberg, Donald Sutherland, Charlize Theron, Edward Norton, and Jason Statham (who has actual hair on his head, that’s how old this movie is!) It’s an all-star cast, and I admit I had a lot of fun watching the different characters interact, particularly Jason Statham as Rob. Honestly, any film that has Statham in it, I’m probably going to like (it’s partly his accent, accents are my weakness).

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Actually, this movie reminded me more than once of Ocean’s 11 (2001) and I don’t mean that in a bad way. You have to admit they are somewhat similar: an all-star cast playing rogues and thieves out for righteous vengeance (admittedly that’s closer to Ocean’s 13 (2007) but I digress), the insanely detailed planning of the heist, last minute twists that “change the plan but it STILL works out,” and the biggest similarity: the humor, which is there in spades. Though, while similar, the two films are not identical, as I think The Italian Job is much darker in tone than any of the Ocean’s 11/12/13 films (especially that part at the beginning).

Part of the reason I picked up this film at all is because of the MINI Cooper chase that the film is known for. I’d heard from somewhere that this was regarded as one of the best car chase scenes ever filmed, and whoever said it is right. The entire sequence is phenomenal, and I may never look at those cars the same way again. It’s tense, but fun, and it’s great to see them running circles around their nemesis.

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Last, but not least, I need to talk about Edward Norton. If I hadn’t read beforehand that Norton didn’t want to be in the film, I think I still would’ve figured it out. Norton’s attitude stands out throughout the entire film, and not in a good way. Granted, I believe he’s meant to be playing an asshole character, but the way he does it is a complete turn-off. You can just tell, from his snark to the look on his face, he does not want to be there, and he doesn’t care who knows it.

Actually one final thought: how is it that this film has never gotten a sequel? After the film, I read about ‘The Brazilian Job,’ a would-be sequel that never got off the ground, but  even with that film failing I find it hard to believe that no one in Hollywood has come up with a sequel. With that cast, I would be more than happy to watch a sequel follow their continuing adventures. Well, I’m sure if we wait a few more years someone will come up with the idea to reboot the film into a franchise. And truthfully, as long as they find a way to put Jason Statham into it, I wouldn’t mind all that much.

If you haven’t seen The Italian Job, go see it. It’s an older heist film now, but it still holds up and is very entertaining. I feel a little bad that I put off seeing this film for so long, however it was totally worth the wait.

Let me know what you think about The Italian Job in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

Film Reviews

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My Thoughts on: The Expendables (2010)

*the links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.

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By all the rules of film as I understand them, The Expendables should not work. It’s a film filled with big action stars from the last 30 years who are slowly but surely getting past their prime and a story with actors like that just shouldn’t work! However, the action is so over the top that it does work and that’s why I freaking love The Expendables. It’s a story that follows Barney Ross (Sylvester Stallone) and his band of fellow mercenaries as they go on a job for Mr. Church (Bruce Willis). The regular band of Expendables consists of:

  • Lee Christmas (Jason Statham)
  • Yin Yang (Jet Li)
  • Gunner Jensen (Dolph Lundgren)
  • Toll Road (Randy Couture)
  • Hale Caesar (Terry Crews)

There’s also Mickey Rourke as Tool and Steve Austin (of WWE fame) as Dan Paine, one of the bad guys.

The plot of The Expendables, in a nutshell, is extremely basic. The band of mercenaries gets hired on a job that becomes very complicated and messy before all is said and done. In this case, Barry and the rest of our heroes are engaged to take out the dictator of a small island nation, only to find out that he’s being backed by a rogue CIA agent. It’s about as basic as a plot gets for an action film, but that’s alright because the insane levels of violence make up for any missing plot details. Seriously, this film (and the entire Expendables series) is an homage to the action flicks of the 80s. There are explosions everywhere, huge gunfights, and so much blood and death it’s kind of scary at times. And yet, despite that, as I said before, it just works. All the violence, all the gun fights, there’s something oddly cathartic about it all, that I can’t help but love.

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It really is great to see so many action stars together in one place, that’s just part of what makes The Expendables so much fun, seeing all of those stars together and just watching them bounce off one another in all kinds of entertaining ways (I particularly love the dynamic between Jason Statham and Sylvester Stallone).

Let me know what you think about The Expendables in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

My Thoughts on: The Expendables 2 (2012)

Brian Tyler talks The Expendables (2010)

Film Reviews

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