Frank Martin (Jason Statham) is "The Transporter" because for a price he will transport anything - as long as the predetermined rules are followed. Rules are not made to be broken. He doesn't want to know what the package is, he doesn't want to know the names of anyone he is dealing with. He just wants to transport the item and move on. All of this changes when he breaks his own rules and opens a package. Inside this particular package is the beautiful Lai (Qi Shu). From Frank's standpoint this doesn't change much. He delivers her as he was paid to and goes on about his business. BUT the person who hired him to transport it, Wall Street (Matt Schulze) knows that he peeked inside the package and attempts to kill him (Note to Wall Street: It would have been cheaper and less painful to call the Better Business Bureau). But Wall Street underestimates Frank and thus Wall Street and his thugs get their asses handed to them.
While Frank is busy regulating and avoiding a police officer (Francois Berleand) who knows Frank does something illegal for a living, he manages to get stuck with Lai again. She forces herself into his life which Frank resents at first, but he warms up to her eventually - just in time to have that trust questioned. Is Lai on the up and up or is she just as shady as everyone else and more importantly will this get Frank killed?
On the plus side, The Transporter provides almost non-stop action. I was treated to one of the best car chases I've seen in years. I also had the pleasure of seeing some very cool fight choreography that was a distinct departure from the fluid and graceful moves that mirror ballet. This was no ballet, this was slam dancing in a mosh pit and I loved every minute of it. Jason Statham was perfectly cast as the quiet and stoic Frank. Qi Shu was cute as button and Francois Berleand provided the brevity and lighthearted moments that were needed at times.
Unfortunately all of this was not enough to elevate this movie from the bowels of a pit filled with crap - the crap being corny dialogue and piss-poor plot. And within its piss poor plot were even more ridiculous sub-plots. Sometimes action and special effects isn't enough, even for me.
Itís fine if you like movies that are pure "cheese", but be warned that this is some funky cheese.
Halfway through you may want to be transported back home.
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Copyright Kamal "The Diva" Larsuel-Ulbricht, 2002
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