Drive Hard With a Vengeance
When I sat down to watch "Transporter 3" I did so expecting little, I hadn't been impressed by "Transporter 2" and its outrageous action and was expecting this latest movie to follow suit and deliver even more outrageous nonsense. And to be honest it does with some truly over the top actions scenes especially those featuring a car and train. But this time it doesn't feel like we have a movie just about the action because there is a storyline and one it sticks to. It may not be the greatest of storylines but it dilutes the action which there is still plenty of to give a more balanced movie.
Having turned down a transporting job and recommending a friend do the work Frank Martin (Jason Statham - Death Race) finds himself facing a very unhappy villain when the driver Frank recommends botches the job. Forced to take the job thanks to an explosive bracelet which will go off if he moves too far away from the car Frank finds himself driving a woman called Valentina (Natalya Rudakova) to an unknown destination programmed in to the cars GPS system. With his movement limited Frank must work out what these bad guys are up to but also find a way to remove the banging bling from his wrist.
As storylines go "Transporter 3" whilst having one doesn't really have a good one and it is all very obvious. Basically are resident hero Frank is forced to transport a package, a woman and has to deal with an explosive bracelet which limits what he can do, especially as seeing he didn't agree to the job is doing what ever he can to stop the bad guys from whatever they are up to. And that it is really it, we may get the set up that the bad guys are blackmailing a Government minister to sign papers to allow them to dump toxic waste but it is really just a set up. But this simple and slim storyline feels more important than in "Transporter 2" with it actually being the vehicle for delivering all the expected action rather than being squeezed in between action scenes.
But of course you watch "Transporter 3" really for the action, the car driving and Frank Martin kicking a lot of butt in a very cool, efficient way. And there is plenty of action be it car chases or fight scenes which quite often end up with a shirtless Frank dealing with increasing numbers of bad guys. It is all that we expect, familiar to what we have witnessed before but with slight changes, slight moments of often humorous creativity to impress you. Although again the action does grow to outrageous proportions especially during the final 20 minutes and for some reason the team who did the editing have chopped every fight into one second snappy edits which actually spoils things.
And then there is Jason Statham, Britain's answer to Bruce Willis as he gets typecast in the same sort of role time and again, and Statham delivers that same solid performance we saw him deliver in "The Transporter". It is Statham's cool delivery be it when escaping a tight situation in his car or using his shirt whilst fighting a group of men which keeps you watching well that and the amusing banter between him and FranÃ§ois BerlÃ©and as Tarconi. Aside from Statham and BerlÃ©and well Natalya Rudakova has this sexy thing going on as Valentina and Robert Knepper does a reasonable job of being a bad guy although looking strangely like a younger looking Duncan Bannatyne from "Dragon's Den".
What this all boils down to is that "Transporter 3" is what you expect from this action packed franchise. We have car chases and snappy fights with Jason Statham being ultra cool as Frank Martin. It is still outrageous as "Transporter 2" but restrains the amount of action so that the storyline drives the movie rather than the action.