The Transporter (2002/Blu-ray)
B Sound: B Extras: C Film: C
the amazing thing about producer Luc Besson is that he has more than any other
producer ruined the action genre in ways it is just now recovering from. Even when he does not direct, as is the case
with Cory Yuen’s The Transporter
(2002), we still get the same shallow, lame, pseudo-hip style that is more than
played out since he hit it big with the grossly overrated The Professional (itself now proven to be inferior to the longer,
better Leon cut that eliminated all
the depth and intelligence he likely thought would “slow” the film down) and Le Femme Nikita (which became a
terrible TV series) became Action films for those who hated them and possibly a
certain American Action aesthetic for ignorant people who don’t know better.
another bad screenplay by Besson and Robert Mark Kamen, who wrote Kiss Of The Dragon (2001, reviewed
elsewhere on this site in Blu-ray) together, they decide to make the title
character someone who handles illegal, powerful and dangerous arms. He is Frank Martin (Jason Statham) and
British, furthering the odd agenda of these films to trash Hollywood by being
as bad as and worse than anything they produce.
Statham also adds the chic of his connection to British Gangster genre
films, all of which are better than this mess.
To make things worse, it is almost a remake of Kiss Of The Dragon as he suddenly becomes a target who has to run
for his life. Yawn!
of Statham’s somewhat likable screen presence, the film was a hit, especially
overseas, even spawning an unfortunate sequel no one really talks about. Quickly though, the fancy swinging camera to
telegraphing the gunshots and other bad clichés that owe more to bad TV
commercials and Music Videos than anything cinematic make this film look old
already. Of course, Statham does his own
stunts and knows martial arts, but that cannot overcome this mess.
2.35 X 1 MPEG-2 @ 18 MBPS digital High Definition image does look better than
the DVD, which was good, but not great since it is once again manipulated Super
35mm shooting that has only a few memorable shots. The original theatrical Dolby EX/DTS ES sound
is once again represented by DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio sound, though the mix once
again shows its limits. In both cases,
this is the best way to play the film back outside of a film print, but the
sound is as good here as anywhere. Too
bad it only shines in the action scenes.
only include an HD version of the original theatrical trailer and feature
length audio commentary by Statham and Producer Steven Chasman. Hope Statham finds a better franchise,
because this one is finished.
- Nicholas Sheffo