The Transporter – movie review

The Transporter is pure action flick. It opens with a fast, fun, original, well-thought-out car chase, and it hardly slows down from there. Lots of very skilled driving, but you’ll see why they call it The Transporter and not something awful like “The Driver”; plenty of vehicles make their way into this man’s hands.

Sure, they’ve thrown a little story in, but basically as a vehicle to anchor all the fun action and fight sequences to. One day the transporter accepts a job that happens to involve moving a kidnapped woman, which leads him to break his own rules, from which point everything gets totally out of hand. By the end of the movie, instead of being a nameless guy who works for whoever will pay and gets away with it, he’s our hero fighting to save the lives of the innocent.

There is a point in the movie where it becomes clear that he must have been trained as a Navy Seal or equivalent, and from that point forward it just becomes less and less believable that one man so young could have learned all this in the course of a military career and managed to get out and onto the business of “transporting”. The fight scenes just become more and more inventive as the film goes on, moving into smaller and smaller spaces or introducing stranger and stranger elements.

There is one fight in particular where ‘our hero’ intentionally spills something like 25-50 gallons of dirty motor oil on the ground and himself to help him fight off 10 or 20 armed men. They can’t get a hold of him or stand up, and he’s slip-sliding around with ease, kicking and punching and trippin and bashing them. He slides out of the huge oil-slick, grabs a bicycle and jumps straight down on it, breaking the pedals off before throwing the bike at a couple of guys who have regained their footing. Here’s the REALLY clever bit: he steps into the pedals (they have those straps to hold your feet on) and is then able to stand and fight in the middle of the oil slick while surrounded by men who can hardly keep from falling, let alone fight. It goes on like this for almost two hours, and if you love action, you’ll love it!

There’s one scene we’ve all seen in the trailer for this movie that depicts him deflecting a rocket with a pie-plate or similar hand-held metal disc, and sadly to say it was not included in the final movie. Or I blinked. There was definitely a rocket fight.

Still, an overall enjoyable movie. The story was well-worn and forgetable, but the action it anchored was more inventive and interesting than most of the action I’ve seen lately. Good stuff.

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