12A – 103mins – Action/Drama/Romance – 10th December 2010
Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie, star in this action romance as Frank and Elise. Whilst on a vacation to Italy to recover from a broken heart, Frank a maths teacher, is minding his own business on a train when Elsie sits opposite him. They strike up a bond and Frank thinks its his lucky day when he runs into her later. Unfortunately for him, this is not a chance encounter but rather a scheme by Elise to use him as a decoy as protection for her lover Alexander Pearce who is a wanted man.
As no-one knows what Alexander looks like Frank finds himself in the middle of an intentional misunderstanding that puts him in the firing line of mobsters, from whom a large sum of money has been stolen and the British government for tax evasion led by Chief Inspector Jones (Timothy Dalton) and Scotland Yard’s John Acheson (Paul Bettany)
The main flaw is that this movie contains the top A-list celebrities of Hollywood, director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck and is all set in the lovely city of Venice implying that it will be a feast to behold. The standards have been set high. Yet not only did I find the movie to be obvious in its direction- I was never sitting on the edge of my seat waiting or even wanting to see what was going to happen next but there was no chemistry between Depp and Jolie at all.
It was good to see Depp as a ‘normal’ character and by that I mean he wasn’t draped in make-up and he did not see to have any extreme character flaws or quirks that usually accompany his other roles. He was the one who kept the movie interesting for me. However, I didn’t fully understand Bettany’s character. Granted he has some sort of vendetta against Pearce but he just didn’t seem believable and was overly obsessed to the point he would have been issued with some gross misconduct charges.
The action scenes are well done and the settings impressive but you get the sense that the film hasn’t worked out if it’s a comedy, action or a romance. Yes a movie can be all three but The Tourist fails to seam them altogether leading to the viewer becoming somewhat detached from the storyline. And why they found it necessary to put Jolie in a stunning dress for every scene with people gawping at her is beyond me. Don’t get me wrong, I like a bit of eye candy but it turned the movie into something more akin to a perfume commercial or catwalk show instead of a film.
At the end, although I was reasonably entertained whilst watching it, I now feel no real desire to see it ever again. Venice and its buildings add a nice visual appeal to the film but I needed more than that to keep me interested. Wait for it’s appearance on the TV if you have any desire to see it.