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Overall Rating

Awesome: 13.48%
Worth A Look36.88%
Average: 22.7%
Pretty Bad: 19.86%
Total Crap: 7.09%

10 reviews, 81 user ratings

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Transporter, The
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by Brian McKay

"Qi Shu can ride in my trunk any time, but I'd rather watch THE HIRE"
3 stars

In an obvious attempt to cash in on the short but entertaining BMW films about THE HIRE (Clive Owen), Luc Besson has regurgitated your standard action movie. While it certainly has more gunplay and kung-fu hijinks than the average installment of THE HIRE, it is ultimately less entertaining, despite the likeable leads.

Frank Martin is The Transporter (who, coincidentally, drives a BMW). He is played by Jason Statham, best known for his memorable stints in the films of Guy Ritchie (before Guy started making crappy vehicle films for his ho-bag wife). As an action lead, Statham isn't bad at all. He's got the good looks and chiseled build, and he's definitely got some decent moves. When he's shifting gears, pulling the trigger, or putting his foot into somebody's face, The Transporter is a hell of a good time. Unfortunately, the rest of the movie is down time as it trudges through tons of unecessary plot exposition for a rather silly plot.

While the action is good, the rest of the film is just lazy. How many more goddamn times are we going to have this scenario?

Hero is about to get shot. A gun goes off, we think the hero's been hit, but wait! Someone else shot the bad guy! Bad guy looks down, sees blood oozing through shirt, falls over, camera pans over, cue dramatic shot of hero's savior holding gun in trembling hands

Jesus Christ in a Gucci handbag! I am so tired of seeing this in every action/suspense movie ever made. And there are plenty of other cliches and leaps of illogic as well. Like the opening scene, where Martin argues with the bank robbers he is supposed to be transporting away from the scene of the crime. He refuses to take them because the deal was for 3 passengers and there are four of them. After this long (albeit amusing) argument about why he can only take 3 of them because 4 will throw off the fuel to passenger ratio and increase their chances of pursuit, they finally ditch one of the robbers. Of course, by now the cops have had all the time in the world to show up, leading to the very chase that Martin was supposedly trying to avoid. Imagine that.

The main gist of the plot is that Martin is hired to transport a package to a thug known only as "Wall Street" (Matt Schulze, playing the usual pissed-off and coked-out looking villain that he has in his last five films). Along the way, he makes the mistake of violating one of his cardinal rules and looking inside the package. What he finds is a gorgeous, hog-tied asian woman named Li (Qi Shu). After giving Li a sip of juice and a piss-break, he dutifully bundles her back up and delivers her to Wall Street. After all, a deal is a deal.

But when Wall Street tries to off him for his efforts, The Transporter comes back with a vengeance. Beginning with the most memorable door-kicking scene in movie history, he proceeds to shoot, kick, and bludgeon all of Wall Street's men silly. When the main baddie himself is nowhere to be found, he hot-wires a mercedes and takes off - only to find that Li, who escaped in all the chaos, is hitching a ride in the back seat. Against his better judgement, he decides to rescue her and take her back to his place.

Needless to say the rest of the film is Frank and Li dodging bullets and beating up bad guys, while of course finding time to get their freak on along the way. Statham is definitely action hero material, but deserves a better movie to show off his talents in. For those so inclined, he takes his shirt off - a lot (even using it as a weapon in one scene). For the rest of us, we get a little sumthin' sumthin' in the form of Qi Shu. She plays the part with perky effervescence. Okay, so she's not the greatest actress, but hell, just look at her! Sadly, though, she doesn't take off articles of clothing nearly as often as Statham does.

The rest of the cast is completely forgettable, if not downright annoying - like François Berléand as a french cop who can't decide if he wants to arrest Frank or help him, and whose English is so horrid that I could barely understand every fifth word he said.

Drive-In Triple Feature "Get in The Trunk, Bitch" Picks for The Transporter:

Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai: Forrest Whitaker is a ghetto hitman who follows the Japanese code of Bushido, or "Path of the Warrior". He also has a penchant for stealing BMW's and other high-end vehicles.

Bullit: Steve McQueen's car chase through San Fran - still the best ever.

Also, check out the series of short films about The Hire at, and note the similarities.

A fair ammount of shootouts and fisticuffs (including one fight scene in a giant crude slick that vaguely looks like gay oil-wrestling), and some decent chemistry between the leads, make this watchable - once. Unfortunately, the plodding story and anticlimactic ending just feel like grinding gears. If there's one thing in this movie I could watch over and over again, though, it's the scene where Statham kicks the door in on that dude.

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originally posted: 10/19/02 08:19:05
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User Comments

9/13/17 morris campbell transports the thrills to the viewer 4 stars
12/21/10 Josie Cotton is a goddess Worth seeing, but only once 3 stars
10/23/09 Rachel Really enjoyed this fast paced movie from start to finish! 5 stars
8/19/08 Shaun Wallner Great Action!! 5 stars
2/18/08 cdmtx awesome! 5 stars
12/02/07 davidbobo20 screw xXx, this movie is awesome! 5 stars
9/20/07 R.W. Welch C+ actioner has little that's new but moves well. 3 stars
9/30/06 Stanley Thai It's a good action flick. 4 stars
9/26/06 Anthony Feor It can keep up with itself 3 stars
2/18/06 Ronin Yup - Statham great and bad script. Sill nice to watch 4 stars
2/03/06 tony Good in its own way 4 stars
1/12/06 tatum Fun, mindless actioner 4 stars
10/31/05 chris exellent film i loved it 5 stars
10/14/05 Mike Statham great, horrific script, an old B Karate movie done modern. 2 stars
10/12/05 Tom Burns great action. 4 stars
10/10/05 Agent Sands It's fun, but very simplistic and anti-climatic. 4 stars
9/27/05 Indrid Cold Dumb, over-the-top Hong Kong style action movie = good fun. 4 stars
9/20/05 Carolyn Rathburn Another blow everything up and fall for the girl movie, it was great 4 stars
9/15/05 John great concept but pedestrian execution 3 stars
8/23/05 ES This movie has a great start and then devolves into Seagal/Van Damme fight style movie 1 stars
7/25/05 Eric Rollins A comic masterpiece, too bad it's not a comedy. 3 stars
6/05/05 Charlene Javier What was that about? 1 stars
6/03/05 deadwiz To much lack of story, and really pointless action 3 stars
4/26/05 E-FUNK I imagine this is what gay porn is like... but with less story and acting skills. 1 stars
3/14/05 Ronin Statham is as good actor as any guy picked randomly from the streets.Good montage. BMW rock 4 stars
1/28/05 Charlie Exciting, fast paced action flick! 4 stars
10/14/04 Sandy Great! 4 stars
8/17/04 Dean-o Qi-Chu is lovely. The film is not about plot, it is a demonstration of Sun Zi's Art Of War. 4 stars
8/11/04 Dean Why did she screech so much, it still don't get the kidnap part 4 stars
5/08/04 Stefan Halka Slick, well-choreographed fight scenes could not make up for the weak script the film had. 3 stars
4/17/04 Michael Greenwaldt Awesome action flick! The heck with crap like xXx and Vin Diesel, Statham oozes sex appeal! 4 stars
4/15/04 The More You Know Statham just misses box office success on 1 hand, Bruce Campbell cult status on the other. 4 stars
3/15/04 "Meth Labs" for DUMMIES WOW...Uhhh, WOW?????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
11/15/03 HorrorScribbler Fun but loses all credibility when Statham parachutes onto a moving truck from a cropduster 4 stars
11/09/03 Shane Myers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ONE OF MY FAV'S NEXT TO "Cowboy Bebop: The Movie" & "Freddy VS. Jason"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
9/05/03 Lia Aranga Great, I love long car chases 4 stars
8/09/03 Eric Not high art, but packed with tons of great action, Statham's awesome 5 stars
8/04/03 punjab utter pish! 1 stars
6/23/03 David Get sillier as the clock rolls by, Statham's wasted here.... 3 stars
6/16/03 Jason Cowan Good 4 stars
6/13/03 Robin Swados "The Transporter" is one of the best bad movies I've see in years. It's a junk masterpiece! 4 stars
6/02/03 Daniella Great! Awesome! My Favorite! Incredible! 5 stars
6/01/03 Shane Myers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Fucking great to watch, Jason Statham is the next Bruce Willis!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
5/28/03 brentley Parity errors galore, illogical plot events... The fight scenes were ok, tho. 3 stars
5/22/03 Desert Rat Painfully lame!!! 1 stars
5/18/03 Zaharin Hamid aka The Movie Samseng It's like watching MTV while riding a rollercoaster! 4 stars
4/16/03 YES Car chases, martial arts fights, death-defying stunts, The Transporter's tons of fun. 5 stars
4/04/03 Ric Fun action romp, Jason Statham is the next great action star. 5 stars
3/28/03 Jon Killer action romp, but why does the plot for these kinda movies always have to be shit 4 stars
3/17/03 Peter Nice look on Paris. Lots of action, and great picture. A great movie for action fans. 5 stars
12/12/02 Natalie Stonecipher 2nd gratuitously violent film set in France I've seen this week. What kinda trend is this? 1 stars
12/08/02 ADP Action at the ebd was good but a lot of bad acting. Strathma has seen too many kung-fu movi 2 stars
12/04/02 Robin Fletcher ABSOfuckingLUTELY awesome! Statham is our new action star! 5 stars
11/26/02 malcolm great Hong Kong style action featuring white people 4 stars
11/26/02 Jeremy Witteveen Great action flick, if you don't expect too much characterization 4 stars
11/25/02 Ravenous Jason Statham is eye candy and fight choreography was fierce. Plot was non-existent 4 stars
11/10/02 jason wonderful 5 stars
11/09/02 Michael Bolton What a pile of crap, no plot just gay 'karate scenes' what a piece of shit. 1 stars
11/05/02 Tyler Rowe Wicked movie, thought it was great. Great stunts and karate scenes. 5 stars
11/05/02 Michael Buehler Wretched-An excuse to cram as much low rent choreographed violence into a movie as possible 1 stars
11/04/02 Anarchy Azmi barely average least its better xXx....which was completely gay 3 stars
11/01/02 F.E. The most fun I've had in a movie for a while! 5 stars
10/31/02 SGR Fights at about half the speed of Jet Li and has none of Jackie Chan's finesse 2 stars
10/29/02 Jason Statham Best Film ever 1 stars
10/27/02 Mr. Hat Jason Statham is cool, but not quite as much in this unrealistic action flick 3 stars
10/20/02 Jamer 1/3 Jackie Chan, 1/3 James Bond, 1/3 Hitman (videogame series). Good flick. 4 stars
10/20/02 The Bomb 69 white knuckle action with a decent script 5 stars
10/19/02 nick2k first half was fucking good...but what the hell happened to the script afterwards?!? 3 stars
10/16/02 wintermute The fighting was top notch and the bicycle pedals were truly original 4 stars
10/15/02 Interrog8 Loses touch with it's story, but the action keeps it going. Delivers where xXx couldn't. 4 stars
10/14/02 Uncle Salty We're not talking shakespear here, but it sure kicks XXX's ass. 4 stars
10/14/02 Matt Senne The best, worst, funniest movie ever. 5 stars
10/14/02 Chancey Sugarpants Not as dumb as I expected. It's fun, but didn't make me feel like a moron for watching it. 4 stars
10/14/02 Jiz Started as an original/cool action flick, half-way through turned into boring generic shit 3 stars
10/13/02 King Richard As long as you sit back and enjoy the show, and don't think at all, this flick is alright 4 stars
10/13/02 "Yes the shit." Good entertainment to sneak into. Or the 3 AM is a good idea. 3 stars
10/12/02 crashdavis This movie sucks all ass. Wait for it at 3am on HBO 9. 1 stars
10/12/02 syrius yeah, the script was bad, but the action more than makes up for it 4 stars
10/05/02 Buddha The dialogue was pretty damn hokey, but it's a fun ride. 4 stars
10/04/02 Zaw Good chaseing around europe small towns. I wish there were more chasing scences. 4 stars
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  11-Oct-2002 (PG-13)
  DVD: 23-Aug-2005


  31-Oct-2002 (M)

Directed by
  Corey Yuen

Written by
  Luc Besson

  Jason Statham
  Qi Shu
  Matt Schulze
  François Berléand
  Ric Young
  Doug Rand

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