thatcow

Tepid

I just watched this movie called The Transporter. It's about this ex-military guy, living in Europe (seems like France), who is hired to get items to destinations for a lot more money than FedEx. Why? Well, for his extreme driving skills and the fact that there's generally something illegal about what's going on. Sounds like a cool job, if you can discount the likelihood of death or legal entanglements.

Frank Martin - our intrepid transporter - is given a lot of screen time for establishing his character. He is neat, professional, keeps an emotional distance, and is, above all, set in his ways. He has a set of rules he uses to govern his professional behavior, and it's clear they have gone a long way to keeping his world intact. Then one day, he discovers he's transporting a young woman, Lai, bound and gagged with duct tape, then there's an attempt on his life, and suddenly things are starting to become personal. The setup for the character is excellent the script ultimately sacrifices exploration of change in his life, for action sequences.

For that matter, the action itself is pretty good. High amounts of creativity and technical skill have melded together pretty well here. It's not perfect, though, and there are definite moments where a well-trained audience knows what's coming.

There are huge, gaping holes in the plot. Why were they having Lai transported in the first place? How did this whole human smuggling/slavery thing work? Not that such things don't happen, but in this case, some insight on the ultimate motivations would have been nice, rather than setting up fairly standard bad guys to be brought down.

The Transporter is close to a good flick, but doesn't really quite make it. A little less action and stereotyping could have done it. Maybe the upcoming Transporter 2 will get it right.

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