(Film only review)
== The Chaperone ==
The Chaperone is a 2011 family comedy movie developed by WWE Studios and it stars WWE superstar Triple H (Paul Levesque) as The Chaperone. As most of you know I am a huge WWE fan and I am also a massive fan of the WWE movies that they make. I do however feel the WWE films get criticized a bit too much. A good thing about the WWE films is the fact that the cast isn't usually well known but they seem to pull off the job and its no different in The Chaperone. The Chaperone also stars Ariel Winter as the daughter of Triple H. The basic story of the movie seems a little plain and ordinary but you have to remember it is aimed at the younger audience and in my opinion it has a very good storyline to the film. The movie starts with a normal but more muscular guy in prison. He looks rough and scruffy and its the day of his release and he intends on going to see his daughter and his ex wife. The thing is Ray (Triple H) hasn't seen them in 7 long years. After being released he meets an old associate who was involved in Ray being sent to prison. The pair of them, along with a few others had robbed a bank and Ray was actually the getaway driver and Phillip Larue (Kevin Corrigan) was the reason Ray got sent down. Larue meets up with Ray soon as he leaves the prison facility and offers him a ride. Ray tells him to move because he wants to drive and Ray actually drives off in his car leaving him there.
The next day Ray goes to meet his daughter who has aged so quickly to him and he feels sad because he missed a huge part of her life. Ray feels he's a much better person now after speaking with and taking Dr. Marjore's advice (she has her own radio show). When Ray arrives he is greeted really badly at first by his ex wife and then by his daughter Sally (Ariel Winter) who basically tells him she doesn't want to know him. Ray doesn't give in but he is then contacted by Laure again who mentions about going to rob another bank. Ray reluctantly agrees to be the getaway driver again and he only agrees to it because he thinks his daughter hates him. Laure and his two goons go into the bank wearing some silly but rather funny masks and whilst they are in there robbing the place Ray is sat in the car. He notices Sally getting on a school bus that's going on a trip. He jumps on after ditching the keys to the car and leaving the criminals in the bank. Ray agrees to Chaperone the kids on the bus (hense the name of the film) but Sally isn't happy at first. After coming out of the bank with the money and noticing Ray has vanished the group of crooks decide to split up because the police are on to them. One of them bumps into the bus driver as he is putting the luggage onto the bus and he leaves the bag of money. The driver doesn't realize and puts it on the bus. Now the film begins properly as Ray wants to build a relationship with his only child. However that could become a problem because Ray doesn't realise that there is a bag full of money on the bus too, in which the crooks want desperately and will stop at nothing to get it. Can Ray do the right thing? Is it too late for him and his daughter to become close? Find out by watching The Chaperone.
=== Did You Enjoy It? ===
Yeah I loved the movie. As I stated I have always loved the WWE movies even though some aren't very good. I'm a fan, its in my blood. This one I do feel is different to most of the WWE films. Usually WWE Studios make action movies but the last couple have been comedy movies for kids. Knucklehead which stars The Big Show and of course this one starring Triple H. I did feel the movies storyline was quite plain and I do think the movie was predictable all the way through it. However this doesn't necessarily mean its a rubbish movie because its not. I found the movie to be very funny to be perfectly honest and I don't usually find kids film that entertaining any more. One of the best things about these WWE movies is seeing our favourite WWE superstars starring in them and doing roles we probably wouldn't dream of them doing. Big Show wearing an over grown diaper and Triple H being a chaperone to a bunch of kids. The Chaperone has some very hilarious one liners and it also has some scenes that had me laughing for a while. I did enjoy the movie more because its Triple H. One of my all time favourite wrestlers and even though he didn't really inspire or shine in Blade Trinity he does pull this one off. I do feel its more of a family film than a movie for someone like me who doesn't have anyone to watch them with but I did still like it. Overall its funny, has some great action scenes and was really enjoyable.
=== Characters/Performances ===
Triple H is the main star in the movie and he takes the role as Ray (Ray-Ray is his crook name) who has just been released from prison and wants to turn his life around and get back whats important to him. Triple H plays this role really well and to be fair before this movie I had Triple H down as a very poor actor but this role was perfect for him and he excelled himself and he shined brilliantly. Sally who is played by the very young actress Ariel Winter is a great character to the movie. She is the daughter of Ray and shes the type of character that can bring the movie to life. I really think she could be an actress to look out for in the future because in this she was phenomenal. Most of the characters in the movie were really good but I did feel like the crooks were a little weak. They didn't look at all much like crooks and Triple H probably could eat them for breakfast. Laure who is played by Kevin Corrigan who is fairly well known throughout the industry does pretty well and he plays the lead crook. Now he isn't too bad as a crook but a leader? I just don't see it. I did feel like the rest of the cast were very respectable and I also believe this to be one of the movies strong points as they all did a fine job.
=== The Director ===
The director of the movie The Chaperone is a man named Stephen Herek who was born November 10th, 1958 in San Antonio, Texas, USA. The Chaperone, I feel is by far one of the best movies he has directed and worked with. Its one of the funniest and definitely one aimed at the younger viewers and I feel he has achieved what he wanted to achieve with this movie. Stephen Herek has directed a few other movies and some of these include the legendary Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure and others such as Critters,101 Dalmatians, Rock Star, The Three Musketeers, Into the Blue 2: The Reef and quite a few others. Overall I think he has done a tremendous job of directing the movie and I believe he hasn't got much wrong with it.
=== Special Effects & Soundtrack ===
The special effects to the movie actually surprised me the most. I actually didn't think there would be much in terms of effects but there was actually more than I thought. Some of the action scenes are brilliantly designed and do make the movie even better. There are a fair few fighting scenes, when I say fighting I mean a punch here and there. These scenes actually looked good, almost wrestling like. The special effects to the movie aren't the best ever but for a family comedy movie starring a WWE superstar I feel they are pretty good. The soundtrack to The Chaperone was actually a very interesting one. Some of the songs used in the scenes were great. Some are songs I actually listen to and it made me enjoy the movie even more. I always like a movie more when they use the songs I love. The tracks used in the movie fit perfectly into each scene they are used in and I feel this made the movie great as well. Overall the special effects in the movie and some of the action sequences were quite good and the sound track was equally impressive and I feel these actually helped the movie in the long run.
=== Good Bits ===
*A very funny movie in places.
*Some great performances and a wide range of actors and actresses.
*A film the whole family can watch.
*A very enjoyable movie for almost everyone.
*Some good action scenes for a comedy movie.
=== Bad Bits ===
*The basic story of the movie has been used before.
*The movie is very predictable all the way through it.
*Its mainly aimed at kids but it is still a good movie and kids will love it.
*There is lots of stuff to the story and it drags on a little.
=== Final Bits ===
The Chaperone is a great movie and to be fair I have seen many reviews slating the movie and heard many people saying its rubbish. I however loved it. Its a very funny movie and at times can be taken very seriously. The movie has a lot to offer and fans of the WWE Studio movies will absolutely adore this. There are many movies like this but I do feel its one of the best of its kind. I loved the fact its got Triple H in it and I believe he did a great job along with his fellow actors/actresses and I did enjoy it more with him. I would recommend this to almost anybody. It has tons to offer and I also believe it would be great to watch with your family. The Chaperone is possibly one of the best WWE Studio movies and I cant wait for more to come. The movie is actually harder to find in the UK but it is possible. Amazon are selling the DVD for £9.99 and I do think its value for money because its a superb film and kids will love it. The Chaperone has a UK certificate of PG and it contains mild language and violence and I do feel this is right. The runtime to the movie is 104 minutes and I think that is almost perfect although I was really enjoying it until it finished. Overall I loved the movie apart from a few little bits and one of those was the fact it was way to predictable. However overall it made me laugh, had some great scenes in it and some quality acting in places and I feel Triple H has done really well. I would give The Chaperone a very solid 7/10 well worth watching or better yet owning!
Review will also appear on Ciao under my username: MrBrightside1987!
Ray Bradstone has spent 7 years in prison, and now he's determined to get away from his previous life of crime, and do the right thing, especially being there for his now teenage daughter Sally, who funnily enough wants nothing to do with her jailbird father. Relations are strained between Ray and his ex-wife Lynne too, and Ray doesn't know what to do. When the opportunity to be a chaperone on his daughter's class trip arises, Ray sees it as the perfect opportunity to bond with Sally again. Desperate for money, Ray agrees to one more job with his old friend Larue, but changes his mind when he thinks about Sally. Ray runs off, leaving them without a getaway driver, and some very angry criminals on his tail.... and the rest of his daughter's class too. Will Ray be able to protect those nearest to him while trying to avoid going back to prison at the same time?!
I'll be completely honest with you straight away and tell you I only watched this film because it starred Paul Levesque, AKA Triple H from WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment). I'm a massive WWE fan as you may know, and when I saw this available on Netflix one evening, I couldn't resist giving it a watch. I was fully expecting it to be terrible, as while the WWE superstars can pull off acting for the shows, I wasn't sure how far Levesque's acting skills could be stretched for a movie. The movie itself is produced by WWE Studios, so obviously they wanted to make Levesque look good, and I have to say I did enjoy this film! It isn't the best movie I've ever seen, far from it in fact but it was a pleasant enough watch with a decent storyline and a pretty good cast too.
Paul Levesque takes on the main role as Ray, an ex-con who is determined to get back on the straight and narrow. He fits the part quite well, looking physically intimidating when necessary, yet has a softness to him with the scenes with Ariel Winter, who plays his daughter Sally in the movie, and carries off some comedic lines quite well too. Some of Levesque's lines were a little wooden, and felt a little cringey, but overall I thought he put in a good performance, and was fine to watch throughout. He manages to switch from fighting to more emotional scenes with ease, and I have to say his performance impressed me - he was certainly better than I was expecting! Ariel Winter, Sally in the movie, was fantastic and is certainly a talented young actress. She pulls off the stroppy embarrassed teenager look with ease, and the on-screen relationship between her and Levesque was believable and enjoyable to watch as it progressed.
The bad guys in the movie were good too, and provided a lot of the laughs in the film, simply because they are pretty useless bad guys actually. Kevin Corrigan, an actor I hadn't heard of before this film, takes on the role of Ray's former friend Phillip Larue, who wants to hire him for one more job because he changes himself. He does well in the fairly undemanding role, but doesn't look anywhere near as menacing as Levesque throughout, simply because of their physical differences and it's hard to understand why Ray Bradstone would want to bow down to a man like that! Nick Gomez, as Nick the dippy bus driver was funny too, and had some amusing scenes in there, he certainly made me laugh anyway. Finally, Yeardley Smith, better known as the voice of Lisa Simpson, is class teacher Miss Miller, and she's very funny, good to watch on-screen and works really well with Levesque too, she's a great addition to the cast.
The movie is based around the idea of a school trip, and it worked quite well in terms of keeping the pace up and the setting of the movie moving around too. The school class head to New Orleans on their trip, visiting a museum amongst other places, and this allowed for a few good action sequences, although they were more few and far between than I was expecting to see. There are no big special effects, no expensive sets - it clearly isn't a movie with a huge budget but for what is was, it worked well and there was always something happening and you're left wondering what Ray will have to deal with next. It is a tad predictable in that you can guess what's going to happen at the end but I actually didn't mind that, it was good to just sit and chill out in front of, not having to think about it too much and just watch the plot unfold.
I'm sure people will slate this movie purely because it stars a wrestler rather than a "real actor", but I felt that Paul Levesque did a really good job in his role, and was certainly believable as an ex-criminal turned good guy. He does well in the role of a father too (he's a real life father of 3 with his wife, WWE Executive Vice President Stephanie McMahon), and pulls off the more emotional scenes too which impressed me. It's a movie about redemption and making the right choices in life, but manages to throw in some good comedy scenes, action and a good cast too. Ray wasn't your average criminal - trying to better himself while he was in prison rather than wasting his time, and it added a little extra dimension to his character too. I enjoyed it - it wasn't anything special and the plot is pretty weak, but it was held together by a very good Paul Levesque, and was a pleasant way to spend an evening and I am sure fans of Triple H will certainly want to watch this one.
Directed by Stephen Herek
Written by S. J. Roth.
Running Time: 103 minutes
Paul Levesque ... Ray Bradstone
Ariel Winter ... Sally
Yeardley Smith ... Miss Miller
Annabeth Gish ... Lynne
Nick Gomez ... Nick - The Bus Driver
Kevin Corrigan ... Phillip Larue
José Zúñiga ... Carlos
Kevin Rankin ... Goldy
Enrico Colantoni ... Dr. Etman