From Paris with Love Review


If Dune fans felt a knot developing in their stomachs when Taken director Pierre Morel was announced as the new shepherd of the big-screen remake of the sci-fi classic, then Morel's newest film, From Paris With Love, is bound to drive a few of those same fans to the brink of full-fledged nausea. For if it's a thinking-man's Dune that they want, From Paris is about as far from such an approach as possible -- it's fast, funny, and pretty dumb.


It's also quite enjoyable, thanks largely to Morel's very willingness to play loose with logic. And that's the only way the film could work with the whack performance that John Travolta turns in as Charlie Wax, super-spy and crazy-man extraordinaire. After years of forgettable and similar roles, he has finally given us a character that can stand alongside the likes of Vincent Vega, Tony Manero, and in terms of pure brainlessness, Vinnie Barbarino.


Which isn't to say that Wax is a dummy. No, he's certainly the kind of guy you'd want on your side if you were to find yourself in Paris on the wrong side of a drug ring/terrorist plot. Or something like that, for the plot of From Paris -- scripted by Adi Hasak and producer Luc Besson -- is fairly incomprehensible. Not in that it's terribly complicated, but incomprehensible in the sense that the viewer's mind very quickly switches off all reason and common-sense circuits once the first chase scene/gun battle/faceless henchman massacre gets underway.


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