True Review Movie - The Transporter Refueled reviewby Niharika Puri September 6 2015, 3:01 pm Estimated Reading Time: 2 mins, 18 secs
Critics rating: 2 Stars
Cast: Ed Skrein, Ray Stevenson, Loan Chabanol, Gabriella Wright, Tatjana Pajković, Wenxia Yu, Radivoje Bukvić, Lenn Kudrjawizki, Anatole Taubman Noémie Lenoir.
Direction: Camille Delamarre
Produced: Luc Besson, Mark Gao
Written: Luc Besson, Bill Collage, Adam Cooper
Duration: 96 Mins
It can be a tall order to take over the driver’s seat from Jason Statham. Ed Skrein does not nail the landing, which is why the action sequences are all the film has going for it when it comes to a newer, younger audience. Despite that, The Transporter Refueled does not match the insanity of the trilogy.
Frank Martin (Ed Skrein) is a transporter with his own set of principles and rules as he holds steadfast onto a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. After a group of four prostitutes capture his father (Ray Stevenson, Russell Crowe-ish, best actor in the cast) to exact revenge on a ruthless human trafficker (Radivoje Bukvić), he has no choice but to comply with their demands. Polish the car, dry clean the suit. Both are to remain impeccable as Frank plows his way through the Parisian infrastructure and baddies with equal ease.
There is something off about the film from the moment Frank makes his entry, dressed to kill and heading for his Audi. The goons speak in a barely decipherable accent. Frank says something vaguely posh before the fisticuffs commence. And then, it hits you, just as well as the hero’s well-time punch. The Transporter Refueled essentially looks and sounds like a car commercial. Everything from the quick cuts and the rapid delivery makes it sound like the film was in a hurry. Somewhere, the makers confused pace for unnaturally rapid action.
This should come as no surprise, since writer-producer Luc Besson was inspired by a series called The Hire, which was a short film franchise for promoting BMW. Clive Owen starred as the driver.
Putting that distracting narrative style aside, the film is brief and laden with a lot of entertaining action set pieces to see you through. They may delight for the duration but exiting the hall after watching the film is much like devouring a roll of cotton candy and feeling insubstantial within.
Ed Skrein may have fleetingly played Daario Naharis on Game of Thrones but his John Abraham-esque demeanour makes him a slightly better fit for the guns and vehicles spectacle here, even as the ghost of Jason Statham’s Frank seems to lurk in the corner of the frame.
Pacy, predictable yet delivering in the requisite checkmark, The Transporter Refueled can be viewed only as a reboot but not as a follow-up act to Statham’s franchise.