|Transporting is the job (but not like this)|
The screenwriters behind this movie are Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen. Before this time, Besson was best known for writing Léon: The Professional (1994) and Kamen had written for The Karate Kid (1984). To many, those are extremely well written works. In six years they would write for Liam Neeson's Taken (2008). I guess they're writing slipped a little in quality around this time. That's not to say their writing is bad, it's just predictably cliched. There are only a few areas that stand out. The areas that are cliched are the one's dealing with character development in the protagonists and the knowledge of the antagonists.
Statham playing an ex-militant is pretty much the same as how most ex-militant characters are written. They like working alone, but yet end up finding a love interest. They also have retained their martial arts and survival skills since their retirement, which allows them to fight their opponents with ease. It was actually more interesting in the beginning of the movie because it wasn't all about taking on 5 times as many opponents as it was getting the job of "transporting" done. Before the action finale to the film, Statham played a much slicker character - almost like a cheaper version of a James Bond. It was cool to watch him be clever and evade authorities by his driving skills or name changing license plates.
Accompanying Mr. Martin in his travels is the thing that makes him break his rules; a girl named Lai (Qi Shu). Here, she explains to Martin in her best English about a crate shipment of people that are being given to some wealthy guy. It's actually not clearly stated what is purpose of this. Illegal immigration? Slave labor? What? Matt Schulze plays the wealthy bad guy and he doesn't play badly at it either. In fact, viewers may find his performance a little more energetic than Statham's. Not sure if it was meant to be that way, but Statham pretty much plays it straight faced. I would like to know how Schulze's character was able to track Martin whereever he went though. It's a little preposterous since there was no clear indication on how Martin's place of living was discovered.
|Matt Shulze's evil face|
The Transporter had a good premise and started out with class (thanks to the music). By the end though, it's a standard Jason Statham action movie that has consistent flow and doesn't have bad pacing.
Point Earned --> 6:10