Jason Statham returns as the impeccably dressed and facially imperturbable driver of this unlikely franchise.
Statham is acting as the chauffeur-come-bodyguard for the son of a powerful US politician played by a clearly embarrassed Matthew Modine. When the young boy is kidnapped and injected with a deadly poison, Statham sets out on a predictably pyrotechnic pursuit of the criminals.
In one chase sequence, Statham is pursued by a dozen police cars into a multi-storey car park. Seemingly with nowhere to go, Statham smashes through one of the building's walls before miraculously landing on one of the floors of the neighbouring high rise block.
Apparently safe from danger, a helicopter suddenly hovers into view. Statham's machine pistol wielding companion immediately unleashes a volley of bullets causing the chopper to explode.
Perfunctory and underwhelming.
No sooner does the helicopter appear on screen it's blown up. Blink and you'll miss it, as director Louis Leterrier [Clash of the Titans, The Incredible Hulk] immediately cuts away from the explosion. Most unsatisfying.
It seems like the helicopter explosion is only one to disorientate the viewer. You think the action sequence has come to an end, only for Leterrier to throw in an utterly pointless chopper fireball to jolt us out of our genre expectations.
In some ways the scene is a little reminiscent of the classic scene in Raiders of the Lost Ark where Harrison Ford is confronted with a scimitar wielding villain. You expect an extended fight sequence - only to be confounded when he simply shoots the bandit dead.
Number of helicopters
Relevance to plot
Reasonable. The police would conceivably had air support to help with Statham's capture.
Exploding helicopter innovation
A thoroughly bog standard helicopter explosion in both method and execution.
The film is improved for the presence of an exploding helicopter. Fractionally.
In an otherwise imaginative and action packed film, this helicopter explosion is treated with lazy disdain. Exploding helicopter fans have every right to feel aggrieved and to have expected much better.
Review by: Jafo
Review by: Jafo