This fast-paced action film marks the third outing with Jason Statham playing the role of Frank Martin. For THE TRANSPORTER 3, Olivier Megaton (THE RED SIREN) takes over the directorial reins from Corey Yuen and Louis Leterrier.
Combining Western-style car chases and Hong Kong-inspired fight sequences choreographed by martial arts legend Cory Yuen, the Luc Besson-created TRANSPORTER films have found international success as a sort of working-class James Bond series. Jason Statham, who has become the go-to guy for big-budget B-movie thrills, returns once again as Frank Martin, the driver-for-hire for whom no job is too risky. Brimming with the usual jaw-dropping stunts, this is another crowd-pleasing entry in the saga, delivered at a brisk and flashy clip by director Olivier Megaton. Following the coercion of Ukrainian environmental official Leonid Vasilev (Jeroen Krabbe) into signing papers permitting the shipping of toxic materials into a harbour by criminal mastermind Johnson (Robert Knepper), Frank Martin is forced into accepting the job of driving Vasilev's kidnapped daughter, Valentina (Natalya Rudakova)--acting as human collateral--from Marseilles to the Black Sea coastal city of Odessa. On the chance the Martin should attempt to flee, Johnson has rigged him with a bracelet that will detonate if he strays more than 75 feet from his car. When Valentina is intercepted by a rival group, Martin will have to push his Audi M8 to the limit to complete his mission and ensure his own survival.
The TRANSPORTER films require copious amounts of suspension of disbelief, but then again, one doesn't hope they will strictly adhere to the laws of physics. The third volume provides ample thrills, not the least of which is the sight of a car driving off a bridge onto a moving train. Plenty of screen time is also given to Statham's superhumanly chiselled torso, while freckled Rudakova's unconventional beauty balances out the sex appeal. In the end, Statham's undeniable likeability propels the film, and his chemistry in a handful of scenes with François Berleand, returning as Inspector Tarconi, provides some nice comic moments.
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