From Paris with Love: A Movie Review
So, went to see this movie yesterday and I have to say that it was pretty damn entertaining.
I think that if you are going to have make a shoot-em-up, buddy/buddy movie, it needs to be rated “R”. Lethal Weapon was excellent. Lethal Weapons 2 thru 4 were sh*t. Why? PG-13. Having to cater to a younger audience for ticket sales, to offset the costs of stars’ wages and production costs kill the ability to turn out a good flick.
When people are shooting at you, or blowing things up around you, you don’t say things like “Oh crap!” or “Damn it”.
Thankfully From Paris is rated R and it was quite well done. The story comes from Luc Besson, who was the mind behind Nikita ( later La Femme Nikita ) Leon: The Professional, The Transporter series and a few others. Working together again with his director Pierre Morel from Taken, these two put together another good story, not great, but good enough to keep you entertained.
John Travolta has a great time in this role and really sold the part of being a top skilled CIA agent who goes above and beyond in his willingness to get the job done. Travolta did do many of his own fight scenes in the flick and there is a scene where he takes on a small group of would be street thugs that is very well shot and the moves are flat lethal.
Unlike Bourne 2 and 3 where that idiot Paul Greengrass wants the camera so close you can’t see what the hell is going on, Morel films the action with a steady cam that is close to the action without putting the actors in a phone booth.
Jonathan Rhys whatever his name is. Eh. I can take him or leave him, but at least in this role he isn’t as much of a bitch as he has been in other roles.
The plot is essentially Rhys plays an assistant to the American Ambassador in Paris, who also has his sights set on being a career operator for the CIA. Thus far his assignments have been changing license plates on vehicles being used by real operators and planting listening devices. For some reason his live in girlfriend knows all about his CIA aspirations and that he does work for them from time to time. That part didn’t sell too well with either me or the lady because it just wouldn’t be something you would openly discuss.
Travolta plays Charlie Wax and he pretty much turns the volume of violence up to about 23 from the minute he gets going. Lots of weapons play and a couple of good explosions. Wax has been sent to get to the bottom of a plan to bomb the Embassy and disrupt yet another high level meeting ( yawn – like this hasn’t been played to death ), the problem is, of course, all he has is a street level lead that he must follow up the food chain.
Chaos and mayhem ensue, along with a lot more dead bodies, then we get to A Royale with Cheese, which was a nod back to his turn about career character in Pulp Fiction. While this was no James Bond movie it was definitely good enough to catch on PPV or add to the DVD collection. I would rate this a solid 7 and re-watch ability is high in my opinion just to watch some of the hand to hand combat scenes and listen to some of the witty one liners that Travolta throws out.