“ Genre: Crime & Thriller / Suitable for 12 years and over / Director: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck / Actors: Johnny Depp, Angelina Jolie, Paul Bettany, Timothy Dalton ... / DVD released 2011-04-25 at Optimum Home Entertainment / Features of the DVD: PAL „
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I'd been looking forward to watching this again.
After catching it in the cinema on release I found myself suffering from a bit of a mental block and not able to remember much about it, so I recorded it on the old Sky+ when it came on TV a few weeks back and last night I found myself with a couple of hours to kill so sat down and gave it another go.
Angelina Jolie as Elise Clifton-Ward
Johnny Depp as Frank Tupelo
Paul Bettany as Inspector John Acheson
Steven Berkoff as Reginald Shaw
Timothy Dalton as Chief Inspector Jones.
All in all the cast was quite well assembled.
Angelina Jolie was clearly the 'star', despite both her and Depp being huge names to score on the cast-list. Her salary was rumoured to be in the region of $20million, while Johnny Depp managed to negotiate a not insignificant $15,000,000 for his hard work!
There were times when Jonny Depps 'Frank' was a bit unbelievable though, particularly the romantic scenes with Angelina Jolies 'Elise'. They clearly exist in different worlds and the whole 'falling for a bit of rough' thing doesn't really work here as Depp stumbles through scenes uncomfortably while looking as though he needs a good wash and the loan of somebodies comb!
Paul Bettany, while a thoroughly good actor and one I enjoy watching, seemed a little bit flustered as the pursuing inspector and entirely overshadowed by his boss, expertly played by seasoned 'thesp' and silver screen favourite Timothy Dalton, when they share screen time.
Berkoff is just excellent, and for me totally steals the show as the mob boss who has been liberated of close to 2 billion dollars by an ex-employee and is out for cold blooded revenge! He oozes menace and is physically imposing despite his, ahem, 'advanced years', and his goons compliment his character perfectly.
Simple enough premise to this film and it is modelled very closely on a French movie named Anthony Zimmer.
Angelina Jolie plays Elise, the on/off lover of an on-the-run conman who goes by the name of Alexander Pearce.
Prior to the events in the film, Pearce masterminded the theft of $2billion from his employer Reginald Shaw, a gangster with gambling and prostitution rackets across Europe worth many billions of dollars. After carefully laundering the money through various legal business ventures in the UK Pearce now also owes Revenue & Customs slightly over £744 million in unpaid tax! Oops.
As Pearce has vanished without a trace (presumed to be living under an assumed identity after several million pounds worth of reconstructive plastic surgery) both Shaws henchmen and Scotland Yards 'financial crimes' division are tailing Elise hoping to catch Pearce if and when he contacts her.
All of their prayers are answered when Pearce sends Elise a letter telling her to catch a train to Venice where he will be waiting. Her instructions are to choose a decoy to sit with on the train; someone of the approximate height and build of Pearce who her not-so-secret tails will presume to be the man himself, therefore allowing her to slip away and meet the real Pearce.
Enter Johnny Depp as a vacationing schoolteacher totally taken in by Angelina Jolies charms, and hung out as bait for the pursuing police and villains.
Still with me? Hmmm.
What follows is a pretty competent action/comedy/thriller rippling across the gorgeous scenery of Venice as a confused Depp escapes death and arrest at every turn, Scotland Yard figure out that Johnny Depp is not an international fraudster after all but just a tourist and therefore re-focus their efforts on the real villain, while the wronged gangster Shaw bulls his way across streets and canals with Alexander Pearces death the only thing on his mind! (aside from taking back his cash, of course).
No spoilers in my reviews, but there are two good twists in the plot with one quite surprising one at the midpoint and another less surprising one closer to the end...
The ending is a very cleverly developed storyline and is delivered perfectly, wrapping up all three story arcs and almost ensuring that there will be no need for a sequel which is a rare thing in itself!
Blink and you miss it, sadly.
There are two or three potentially great set-pieces in the movie. One of the better is an adrenaline fuelled chase across Venetian rooftops, another is (obviously) a speedboat chase through the narrow Venice canals. While these are both very entertaining diversions, there just doesn't seem to be any pace or sense of urgency, or even the slightest element of peril. Whether that's down to the acting I'm not sure - it probably plays a part - but for me personally I feel it's the lacklustre musical backdrop and poor camera angle choices from our Director, the German born New-Yorker Florian Henckel Von Donnersmarck. He's not a seasoned Hollywood director and is much more suited to slow-burning tense thrillers, and it feels like a bit of a punt putting him at the helm of a huge budget blockbuster here. Like putting a rowing boat captain at the wheel of an ocean liner!
Seriously, the critics seemed to hate this. Whether it was just a poor effort in direct comparison to the original French version I'm not sure, but I personally don't think it deserved the poor reputation it garnered from a handful of pre-release reviews. Certainly not a classic, but not an awful movie by any stretch of the imagination.
'Forgettable' is a word the critics used a lot, or 'unmemorable', and that I have to agree with. I watched it at the cinema and still had to watch it again as I couldn't really remember any stand-out features. Still good fun though.
It did win a couple of teen-choice awards though, and that often spells the end of a movies credibility with an adult audience - even one with a 12 rating such as this.
With a cast-list reading like this one, it was never gonna be a cheap affair!
$100 million budgeted, though rumours are the two stars salaries pushed it over by as much as 10%.
Still, figures state that it took back almost $280million worldwide, allowing the production team to breath a huge sigh of relief (it flopped in the USA, taking $67million total revenue!)
I think I've summed it up as I've gone along, but I did enjoy this movie.
The action is watered down and rather muted and I feel this could have been a runaway success with a 15 certificate slapped on allowing the director to give the actions scenes some sharper teeth, but it's still a good fun action romp which keeps us guessing until the finale.
The rating makes this entirely suitable for family viewing however, and aside from some shooting towards the end it really is quite harmless fun.
Rated 3 stars. Borderline 4 as the casting and acting are top notch, but I do think the action sequences let it down that much.
Directed by: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
Starring: Johnny Depp, Angelina Jolie, Paul Bettany
DVD Release date: March 22nd 2011
Runtime: 103 minutes
The Tourist is a thing of beauty. Angelina Jolie looks absolutely stunning in it, as does the beautiful backdrop of Venice, and James Newton Howard's gorgeous replacement score accompanies the scenes fantastically. Unfortunately, the film has little else going for it, and is somewhat of a genre enigma. To describe the plot almost seems completely unnecessary, however...
Elise Clifton-Ward (Jolie) is being closely watched by Scotland Yard, in hope that the police can track down her known accomplice and ex-lover, Alexander Pearce. The man in question owes £744 million, and Inspector John Acheson (Paul Bettany) will go to whatever lengths to catch him. They follow Elise from Paris to Venice, where on the way she is ordered by Alexander to choose a man with similar height and build to him, and accompany him on the train. Frank Tupelo (Johnny Depp), an American math teacher, is either very lucky or unlucky to be chosen; he is mistaken for Alexander Pearce, a mistake which is quickly rectified by Scotland Yard, but not before an officer informs a known victim/gangster that Alexander has arrived in Venice. Frank, who they believe is Alexander, is hunted across Venice, while Elise, unaware, continues to follow through with Alexander's plan of trying to convince the hostiles that this innocent man is in fact a notorious criminal.
The film encountered an array of cast & crew shifts before and after the filming of The Tourist. The director changed many a time, as did the cast, with Charlize Theron and Tom Cruise originally set to play the leading roles. Gabriel Yared's score was rejected in post-production, to be replaced by James Newton Howard's magnificent one, which I might add is a fantastic achievement for a last-minute job! 'Dance in F', a diegetic piece from Yared's original score, does remain in the film, however.
This film is like a jigsaw where none of the pieces seem to fit whatsoever. The plot and plot development is fairly layered but makes sense, albeit muddily, but its execution is jarring. The casting is odd, in a word, with American A-listers Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie being put alongside the likes of Paul Bettany and Timothy Dalton amongst others. The film was shot in little over eleven months, and one can tell. The acting is comical for the most part; in fact, a lot of it is comical, and I don't think it's meant to be. The film suffers from genre confusion; it features action sequences, but isn't funny enough to be considered an action-comedy, isn't thrilling enough to be considered an action-thriller, and also features a bizarre one-off violent scene. Angelina Jolie is beautiful and sexy, but by God she acts terribly in The Tourist. Johnny Depp is respectable, while all other actor's credibilities are drowned by the film's nonsensical nature.
Angelina Jolie admitted that the only reason she agreed to do the film was due to where it would be chiefly filmed: Venice, Italy. Fair enough. Apart from a particular scene with shoddy set-work, it's generally aesthetically stunning. There is little more to say on the matter; from the boat rides on the beautiful rivers, to the bird's eye shots of the Italian city, it's an element of the movie that they inevitable get right - but that's not saying much. James Newton Howard's score, as aforementioned, is palpable and wonderfully apt, fusing soaring orchestral beauty with electronica - he is a master of film scoring, particularly for this light-action genre.
All of the above said, the film is somewhat enjoyable, although its main reliance is on its aesthetic qualities. I personally wouldn't recommend the film, but its exterior attributes are attractive enough for it to be watchable. It is these qualities, combined with the leading roles of Depp and Jolie that caused it to succeed in the box office. But with poor acting, a muddy plot, a barely-defined genre among countless silly elements, The Tourist is a very dire movie that is only permissible as mindless background content with pretty sounds and pictures.
There was a fair amount of advertisement and talk of The Tourist when it came out. I wasn't that interested in seeing at the cinema because I wasn't completely convinced how good it would be so I rented it more recently; it met my expectations by not being great, but it was still watchable.
The Tourist was directed, and in part written, by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck. I don't know of anything he's done previously, which is only very little, so this was probably his strongest entry into the directing world.
We're introduced to Elise (played by Angelina Jolie), who is inconspicuously passed a letter whilst sat outside a Parisian café. Her instructions are made clear that she should take a train to Venice and find herself a decoy. Why? Because both the Scotland Yard police and a Russian mobster posse are hunting for her lover, Alexander Pearce, and they think she knows where he is. The former want him for being a criminal, the latter want him because he stole a mobster's money. Big mistake.
On the train we meet Frank, a handsome American played by the wonderful Mr Depp. Elise enchants Frank with her womanly ways and before we know it she's suggesting dinner and an invitation to her Venice hotel upon arrival. Despite how 'nice' she may seem, Elise is using Frank as a decoy, hoping those hunting for Pearce will presume Frank is indeed her lover.
It's a dangerous position for Frank to be in, but the police realise what's going on and that's he's simply a tourist, an innocent guy caught up in something far bigger than he realised. But as he starts to fall for Elise, will he work out he's being used, and will the police be able to keep him out of harms way and safe from the thuggish mob?
The plot was fairly different and interesting, and I was finding myself eager to know what would happen in the end, which is always a good thing. The cast was strong with Johnny and Angelina heading up the lead roles, adding credibility and a sense of quality to the film. I already like each of them as actors and I found their presence in this film to be enjoyable, and for the main part relatively believable. I'll admit that I found Angelina's role a little irritating at times to the extent that the character didn't feel realistic enough to properly ground the film.
I liked being able to see different scenes and settings, such as those in Venice. It helped to make the film stand out from the crowd a little and it gave it some diversity, something pretty to look at when the plot or characters weren't particularly interesting or believable.
The relationship between Frank and Elise was a little bizarre and didn't always feel too natural, but it was the comic element that helped to draw attention away from this. Depp does it well, being sarcastic and witty but in an intelligent way so as not to make anything too slapstick. This helped to give the film the overall feel of it being quite dramatic, edged with comedy and seriousness.
There were some stunts and events that stood out and added some colour to The Tourist, but nothing was too memorable for a while after watching it; this wasn't a film I'd rave about or recall specific moments from. Well, apart from Depp smoking an electronic cigarette casually in such a way as to make the seemingly strange act quite 'cool' (but smoking's not cool, kids!). It's the way that Depp always seems to do 'cool' that really brings his character to the fore and makes the film enjoyable. If it weren't for him, I don't think the film would have got as much attention or as many people watching it from start to finish.
Overall, this was a fairly decent watch but it seemed to lack anything special other than the cast. I think too much emphasis was put on Jolie and Depp to the point where believability and atmosphere was somewhat neglected. It was still worth a watch as it was entertaining enough for over an hour, but it's not something I'd rush to watch again.
Rated Certificate 12, DVD released 2011
Selling on Amazon for £4.49
A pretty decent film, particularly for Johnny Depp or Angelina Jolie fans. It combines crime with romance, and makes an interesting film- although not brilliant in my opinion.
Angelina Jolie's character was a bit cold for me to really get into it, and a don't really enjoy films she's in as she's a very unique actor and i feel that it often stops me from getting emotionally invested in the film.
However, if you are a fan of her then definitely watch this film !!
Johnny Depp was great, fitting into his role with ease : he plays a "normal" man who unwittingly gets involved in Angelina Jolie's plan to avoid being caught.
It unravels from there, and there is a memorable scene where they have a boat- race getaway on a river through venice.
The end has a real twist, which if i'm honest, I still don't completely understand how it is possible .... I don't want to give it away ,... I just feel that there should have been a further scene playing flashbacks perhaps , to help the audience understand it better.
This film follows a plot of action, comedy and suspense when a woman (Angelina Jolie) who is told to find someone the same hight and build as her husband and frame him finds a American tourist (Johnny Depp) on a train that could be used in her plot. They go on the run in Venice after the Russians think that it was the man on the train that stole all the money. After a while of doing the Russians attacks Frank (Johnny depp) realises the plot and that his life might be in danger.
Following the two characters we get to know more about their past life and they start to fall in love. The acting is brilliant and its a great film if you want to see Johnny Depp in something that isn't purely comedy based.
The plot twist at the end is very clever and makes the film enjoyable as you do not see it coming.
This film was £7 in HMV but it is cheaper in places like amazon.
Elise Clifton-Ward (Angelina Jolie) is being pursued by ambitious British police inspector John Acheson (Paul Bettany) across Paris and then into Venice. Elise is the girlfriend of Alexander Pearce, a man who owes £744 million. Pearce is also being pursued by a ruthless gangster for $2.3 billion he stole. The police believe Pearce has had plastic surgery. Clifton-Ward tries to throw them off-course by following instructions Pearce has given her to select a man who resembles him on a train. She selects holidaying maths teacher Frank Tupello (Johnny Depp) and begins a romance. Soon Frank is thrown into a whole heap of trouble as both police and criminal pursue him...
Few films seem to demonstrate the film critic versus public disparity than "The Tourist" and its inspiration, the French film "Anthony Zimmer". The latter was beloved of the critics, but did appallingly at the box office. The former did not exactly light up the box office, but it almost tripled its $100,000 budget, and has been universally loathed by noted critics. Then to confuse maters further it was nominated for three Golden Globes. Is it any wonder that more people are now looking towards sites like Dooyoo and Ciao for a less polarized view? My own response somewhat predictably is that I fall somewhere in the middle of these opinions. However, I am happy to report that my leaning is far closer to the paying public than our learned literary elite.
Apparently there has been much debate over whether the film is really a comedy or drama with director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck arguing it is neither, but rather "a travel romance with thriller elements". When pushed he conceded it was more comedy than thriller. If that is the case, it's a bad comedy. The film has no laugh out loud moments whatsoever and, at best, evokes little more than bemusement at the hero's ridiculous predicament. "The Tourist" is a milder riff on the Hitchcockian thriller genre. It is essentially a romantic adventure, but set to a backdrop of organized crime, ambitious cops and espionage. It's full of twists and turns, dramas about mistaken identity and clichés about deep cover - and the usual story about being chased by the police and the mob. We have a typically heartless sociopath as the main antagonist in the picture, gangster Reginald Shaw. The overall lightness of the film actually makes his humourless and highly violent scenes seem out of place. He is played by experienced typecast villain actor, Steven Berkoff - an excellent English classically-trained theatre actor when he is not playing heartless sociopathic villains. Paul Bettany's dislikeable ambitious police officer is more in keeping with the film, but his performance is somehow less effective. He is more annoying than anything else. We have ex-James Bond actor, Timothy Dalton in a glorified cameo as the Chief Inspector Jones. He plays the role completely tongue-in-cheek and must soon be counted among the likes Ian McKellen, Patrick Stewart and, when he still acted, Sean Connery for adding that type of veteran warmth to a picture their presence seems to emanate. These established and proven actors now seem to provide a wink to the camera without having to break the fourth wall.
A key critique of the picture was the lack of apparent chemistry between Depp and Jolie. I can see their point. They do make an unlikely couple and most of their scenes feel awkward, but I think this is what makes it work. It's not the cinematic pairing of the century, but I could buy into the drama.
Depp is as good as ever. There's no doubt about it, he is a talented actor as well as a legitimate star and despite camping things up a lot with Burton and Disney over the past few years, he is still selective over his choice of roles and picks well. The viewer really needs to watch all of "The Tourist" is to really agree with this statement. I am not blowing things out of proportion - this isn't a Kevin Spacey/"Usual Suspects" moment, but it's still good. We know the guy can play quirky well, but let's face it, quirky isn't really that difficult. Johnny Depp's greatest acting strength is his ability to convey convincing and emotive vulnerability. I am not talking about puppy dog eyes boyish charm to appeal to the ladies, but a sincere and believable weakness we can all relate to in some form. In this respect he is much like James Dean and Tony Curtis. He adds credulity to most scenes he is involved in, ensuring you are always on his side no matter how foolish, incompetent or cowardly he may seem.
Despite the wonderful scenery in Paris and especially Venice, "The Tourist" is not a memorable visual spectacle. Aside from a chase across the rooftops and a brief chase on the boats, the location really isn't used to its full potential. I don't mean the action isn't handled well, as it all runs along nicely and with a good steady amount of suspense. The British cops, Russian mobsters, American lead and two European locations does make for a cosmopolitan feel to the picture usually associated with spy thrillers. However, there is little in the way of jaw-dropping set-pieces or stand-out stunts.
All in all, "The Tourist" is fun light entertainment. The plot has enough surprises to stop matters getting too predictable and has a strong enough cast behind it to help us suspend disbelief.
- Story -
A US high school math teacher by the name of Frank Tupelo is picked out by a secret undercover agent (who may or may not be on the governments side) while on a train ride from France to Venice, Italy. He's egged on by the agent, a very charming lady called Elise, who has been secretly ordered to make him a decoy so that the bad guys will be taken off the real scent and will think that Frank is Elise's partner who owes them alot of money. Frank doesn't realise what he's got himself into and soon due to this mistaken identity he ends up in Venice with a bounty over his head, in mortal danger. Can he survive this holiday? what are Elise's true motives and will the undercover agents manage to find Elise's partner? you'll have to watch the movie to find out.
- Thoughts & Opinions -
The title says it all - the main memory I have from this movie is that its all about Angelina Jolie, who very much plays the Femme Fatale in her role as one of the two main characters. She doesn't say all that much, instead its all about the body language and facial expressions, though you'd be surprised that she can make many expressions, guessing that she may use facial injections such as botox to help keep her looking youthful. She does seem almost annoyingly perfect in this movie though, so if you don't like her then this might annoy you lol I've seen a few movies which star Jolie in a main role but none where she's portrayed as such a strong femme fatale type character, I think.
The story is rather cheesy and predictable but yet its not really about the story, its more a movie you watch to entertain and pass the time really. It has elements of comedy about it, with quite a few somewhat subtle jokes mainly relating to said tourist, the rather clueless American who's made out to be really quite stupid, or more ignorant I suppose - maybe this is why the movie was panned by US critics, it doesn't show US tourists in a good light lol the main mistake he repeatedly makes is speaking a few sentences in Spanish, apparently not realising that it s the wrong language lol. In this movie, Depp appears as a more average, even slightly bedraggled character - he's not exactly Jack Sparrow but then that would be too surreal if he was, wouldn't it? lol im sure Depp fans will still enjoy the movie for his presence in it but Jolie undoubtedly commands more of a screen presence, which is ironic given the name of the movie.
Anyway, yes, Mr Tupelo is a rather, dare I say boring and clueless man *at times* (not always but sometimes - he does look somewhat dashing in some scenes later on in the movie going by memory), who is a bit slow to realise quite whats happening. Speaking of that, I found it hard to believe that he just went along with what happened, especially when he's told to follow Elise to join her at the hotel - he never really asks what exactly is going on, why he's being invited to join her at the hotel and given that he clearly doesn't know her, I can only presume that his hinted love of spy novels and his somewhat nonchalant nature tells him to just go with the flow and shrug off the obvious questions that you and I would have if this were to happen to us. In a way this is good for such a movie, in that I suppose it makes it alot more fun to watch, I guess its something that we all might wish would happen, that we go on what could be a bit of a run of the mill holiday and suddenly things take a serious turn and we end up in the middle of some big adventure - I know as a child I used to wish that I could go on some big adventure, have something exciting happen to me, though I can't say I'd like the idea of having to run for my life with a bounty on my head but the movie is certainly exciting enough and I suppose Franks bumbling type nature makes you feel sorry for him moreso than you might do otherwise. Lets face it, if there's no real character connection, an interest in any of the main characters that makes us feel some kind of empathy for them, then whats the point? the movie has failed but I think I did feel sorry for him in parts and as the movie continued and the twists and turned panned out, it certainly kept me entertained.
The movie is almost worth seeing just for the aerial photography, with some pretty great shots of Venice, it was quite impressive seeing it on the big screen. The performances are all decent enough, Depp playing Frank Tupelo and Paul Bettany who portrays Scotland Yard inspector John Acheson (who is also somewhat of a bumbling character in a way lol) giving particularly good performances, as far as I'm concerned, though others may disagree but their characters are the two that come to mind first. Its quite amusing to see the reaction of the undercover agents to whats happening - not everything goes to plan, it would be safe to say! its also true that there's a twist at the end of the movie, although if you take the film too seriously then the ending might leave you feeling somewhat robbed but then the movie is just a bit of fun really - its really not one to be over analysed or thought through in too much detail.
The movie is a good length at about an hour and 40 minutes and going back to the ending, you don't realise that its approached until the credits start to roll really as it looks like the story has taken a new twist and that a new scene is about to start any second but instead the credits roll, so I was taken by surprise that the film had actually ended when it did. I didn't feel overly bored or fed up of the movie while it was on as it was quite amusing with some mystery and action/thriller segments that kept me distracted and wanting to watch to see what the eventual outcome was.
- Would I Recommend It? -
This movie is a bit of a mish mash of a few genres and it has its flaws, yet its not really awful either, it definitely passes the time and there are one or two particularly memorable performances, I feel. I don't think I'd specifically recommend this as its not a movie I'd say is particularly great as a mystery thriller or as an action comedy, though it definitely has elements of all of those genres. Its worth renting but otherwise, its not a big loss if you don't catch it really - its not a really awful movie but its not truly great either.
Thanks for reading my review, I hope you found it useful and thanks, as ever, for any and all r/r/c's. This review was originally posted on Ciao UK under the same username.
A very good film that me and mum watched over and over again. We firstly had borrowed it of a friend with ever intention of watching it once and giving it back with no real thought about it after we had watched it. Suprised to say we have just brought a copy for ourselves with ever intention of watching it many times in the future.
Firstly the acting was very good from all parts. It was nice to see Johhny Depp go back to a role similar to his character in sleepy hollow. A nice change from the Jack Sparrow like charcters as he plays a bumbling clueles tourist well. Also Jolie was good acting as always but has stuck to her comfort zone similar to that of her characters in Wanted and Mr and Mrs Smith. Also contained some very good supporting actors such as a few of the policeman from Scotland yard and also a certain suspect that pops up more than once.
The setting of the film gives an atmosphere that would not be the same set anywhere else. The chase scene that is i boats down the canals would not be the same if it were on rollerblades in Australia (first thing that popped in my head honestly).
The main success of the movie is the complete twist at the end. It is one I never saw coming although I like to not try to hard to work out the mysteries in films. I am sure somebody who really wanted to know the twist might have picked up on the subtle hints throughtout the film but I think most will have a pleasent surpise at the end.
A very good film overall, excitment will stop any boredom whilst watching it and a must for any body who likes Italy.
Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp, in the same movie? Sounds like a movie well worth watching. Despite the fact that this movie was met with mostly negative reviews, I still enjoyed it. Ok, so it wasn't as good as I expected but it wasn't as bad as they say it is either. It's probably the plot that lets it down, not the acting, as it is drawn out for the entire movie with the climax reached right at the very end. However, its the suspense that keeps you watching, you need to know who Pearce is. This is one of those movies that keeps an essential character hidden throughout the entire movie, with them only sending letters and messages to Frank (Depp) and Elise (Jolie), which isn't necessarily a bad thing, because it makes you eager and hungry to find out who this mystery man is.
I think you'd have to watch closely in order to fully understand this movie, and perhaps if you watch closely enough you'll be able to suss out the ending, I; however, was not observant enough and so it came as a very big shock to me at the end. I won't spoil it by telling you what the suprise is, but I'll tell you this: The answer is right in front of you. It is so obvious, and if you don't figure it out before the end, you'll probably kick yourself! What annoyed me was that I felt torn between Pearce and Frank, because both seemed to be deeply in love with Elise, and vice versa. Oh, the choices. Thankfully, this was all sorted out at the end and I was fairly happy with the result.
Now thinking about it, I'm not entirely sure what the point of this movie is. It goes on a very long a drawn out route to find out who Pearce is and perhaps that is why it received such bad reviews. There isn't a lot of substance to it, but for some reason, I still enjoyed it. I realise this is a very confusing review, but I'm very on the fence about this movie. As I sit here I'm wondering whether the shocking finale is worth sitting the through the rest of the movie for and I think I'm going to have to say: yes. It's a unique movie, I don't think there have been any movies like this before and it is fairly entertaining. I am going to recommend this to you, because I want to see your reactions to the ending and whether or not you saw it coming, because that really is the climax of the movie and all there is to it.
Available on DVD from amazon.co.uk for £9.93
It would be faitr to say that Frank Tupelo (Johnny Depp) is currently having the holiday from hell. Upon the train from the Gare-de-Lyon to Venice, he is approached by the mysterious Elise (Angelina Jolie), and, needless to say, is of the belief his luck may possibly start to change for the better.
Mourning the death of his wife, 3 years previous, Frank has taken a trip to Venice, and a break from his career as a maths lecturer, in Wisconsin. However, after being invited to spend the night in Elise's luxury hotel room, Frank finds himself in a near fatal case of mistaken identity.
See, Elsie has deliberately approached Frank, under the instruction of her swindling lover, Alexander Pearce. Pearce has crossed paths with a tantrum throwing gangster, Mr Shaw, rumoured to have killed not only his ex-wife's previous lovers, but her too. So yeah, you wouldn't want to get on his bad side. Now, in a vain attempt to escape, after cheating the toddler like, gun-wielding, bad guy, as well as a rather hefty tax evasion, Pearce instructs the stunning Elise to pick out a man on a train who is of his height and physique. Poor Frank just thought his luck was in. Instead, he finds himself with a bounty on his head, shot at, and arrested...
The Tourist is shot against the beautiful background of Venice, with a luxurious wardrobe, The Tourist is certainly stunning. Yet it holds an element of "I've seen this all before," particularly with scenes and storylines reminiscent of North By North-West (Alfred Hitchcock, 1968), with possibly as many twists and turns as the Hitchcock film itself. The cast is beyond phenonemal, yet it appears somewhat odd to see Depp in a less quirky role than usual. This doesn't, by any means, equate to a less likeable role than his more famous, fairly odd, alter egos, Jack Sparrow, Edward Scissorhands or even 2010's Mad Hatter. Instead, his charms and chivilarous nature as Frank, who appears to quickly fall for Elise, have the audienced rooting for him from the start. Elise, although seemingly manipulative, is still charming, elegant and every part the female protagonist of the film. Jolie plays Elise in a slightly provocative manner, reminiscent of the typical femme fatales of the 1940's film noir period, with an enviable and elegant wardrobe, flushed with whites, creams and gold, which simultaneously contrast with and compliment Depp's dark suits, yet clash completely with his white and blue pyjamas... Sorry, ladies, Frank Tupelo doesn't sleep in the nude...
The plot, although a bit far fetched in places, the revelation of which would result in some pretty big spoilers, is not only enjoyable, but believable enough that you can forgive some of the suspensions of reality. Or maybe all of them... In fact, after seeing Depp in the white tuxedo, at the films climax, hell, I could forgive the film-makers anything!
It came as a slight shock to learn that the film took around $100m to make, none of which seems to have been placed on eye catching stunts. But then, if you consider the location, which includes the luxurious Hotel Daniele, and Jolie's stunning wardrobe, plus the boats used in many of the shots, the budget doesn't seem that far fetched after all.
The climax of the film is slightly predictable; it took me around 15 minutes to work out the goose chase that director Florian Henkel Von Donnersmack is trying to lead the audience on, but then I suspect I may have seen one too many of these films. Although the location is stunning, none of the shots really take your breath away, or have you on the edge of the seat, and to be honest, as much as I loved the film, the climax felt so anti-climatic that it could have been written by the master of the anti-climatic tale, James Joyce.
The film is worth a watch, but PLEASE don't expect your breath to be taken away.
I have to say this film is rather average, at times the directing looks a little amateur and there appears to be no on set chemistry. The two main actors are obviously the main draw and they do play their roles as individuals rather well, however the plot and storyline is all too slow and obvious.
The film is based on the police tracking the ex girlfriend of a fugitive that has stole excessive sums of money from a known gangster, also he failed to pay his taxes to the sum of 744 million....While tracking the rather stunning Elise (Angelina Jolie) it becomes obvious that she has been contacted by Alexander Pearce (the fugitive) and the police and gangster end up playing a wild goose chase around Venice in the hope of finding Alexander Pearce. Throw into this that an apparent "Tourist" that is also caught up in this with the aim of throwing the police of the scent by believing he is Alexander Pearce. There are some ok scenes and twist along the way with this goose chase however it bears of course far too many times with additional plots that seem completely unnecessary. As it nears conclusion the likely ending becomes all to obvious and you are left hoping that there is one final twist to come....
The film is set in Venice and the scenery is amazing with some excellent boat chases; however that is one of the few positives the film has. All in all I would say the film is watchable but not very enjoyable.
The Tourist is an American romantic drama movie starring Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp. The movie was released in the United Kingdom in 2010. The movie is a 12 which means that it must not be viewed by persons under the age of twelve. The running time of the movie is just over one hour and a half. The DVD will be released in the United Kingdom on April 25th 2011.
The plot: Frank is an American tourist who is on a trip to Europe to mend his broken heart. Whilst away, he meets Elise, who he has a bit of a 'thing' with. She however is using him to try and get rid of a criminal who she had an affair with. But what has Frank got to do with this criminal? What will happen? Watch The Tourist to find out!
Films like these are not usually my type of films; I tend to stick to the rom-com genre, and so I had no idea what to expect with this movie, so anything could have happened.It turns out that, despite the fact that this movie was not usually my kind of movie, I did enjoy this movie, which made a change.
I loved Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow in The Pirates of The Caribean movies (in fact, those were the movies that introduced me to him). So, I couldn't imagine him as anything but the pirate character. Seeing him as a teacher in this film was really funny, as he just does not seem like a teacher at all, and so I didn't find his character
believeable. I did think that Angelina Jolie played her part really well; great accent!
I thought that the plot was interesting, the kind which keeps you on the edge of your seat. I particulalrly liked the unexpected twist in the story.
One thing which I really liked about this movie was the great scenery. Venice looks like a really nice place. The scenes in this movie really make you want to go there.
I am used to the predictable endings of romantic comedy movies, and so I thought that I knew what the ending of this movie would be. Although, it turns out that I was pleasantly suprised, and I had no idea that what happened at the end would happen at the end! So if you like movies which are not predictable, try this.
Whilst this is not my favourite genre, I did enjoy this movie, and so would recommend it.
Thanks for reading!
March 13th 2011
xd-o-n-z-x (also posted under xdonzx on ciao)
Films with absurd, preposterous plots need to keep the audience interested by at least making things sassy, snappy and action-packed. The script needs sly, witty humour at every corner, action scenes need to dazzle the screen and the actors involved in the film need to click, and be charismatic enough to make us care. "The Tourist" is a film that ticks none of these boxes, which is why even with the two biggest names in the film industry as its leads (Johnny Depp!!! Angelina Jolie!!!), it turns into a deadly boring, slow, unappealing film that tries to juggle sex, guns, money and betrayals to no successful outcome.
Jolie is Elise Ward, a beautiful woman with that classic femme fatale grin that lets you know instantly that she's hiding something. What has she done? It's unclear at this point but it appears she is under surveillance from the British government. The surveillance involves the most conspicuous van following Ms. Ward around in the French capital, through the narrow streets, only a few metres behind her. Only an idiot wouldn't notice such a sloppy bit of work. But Elise doesn't seem to care. She heads to a café for her usual breakfast where she indirectly receives a mysterious letter from Alexander Pearce. Her mission is to board a train to Venice, find a man similar to Pearce's build, and to fool the authorities into believing that the innocent man is in fact Pearce. Oh, and Pearce seems to be her lover.
Silly enough for you? It gets a lot more free-spirited which again, would have been fine if there were enough entertaining material to back all of it up. On the train Elise has a good look at the men around her. She chooses Frank (Depp), an American maths teacher. Here it helps that Elise is darn good-looking. Frank falls for her instantly and it only takes seconds before he is doing everything she asks him to. Soon they're travelling together, booking into the same hotel room, having meals etc. So she succeeds in her mission. People think Frank is Alexander Pearce. A British agent chasing after Pearce doesn't quite fall for this little trick but he's the least of Elise's problems. It turns out Pearce stole quite a large sum from a dangerous gangster. Over 2 billion pounds to be more exact (it's never explained to us just how someone manages to run off with that kind of money). The boss is obviously angry and has a lot of hired Russian men (whenever there's hired muscle, they're always Russian for some reason) with guns at his disposal. And of course he gathers enough evidence to be convinced that Frank is the man he wants. Frank's life spirals out of control as grumpy-looking agents start chasing him all over the beautiful city for something he never did.
With two appealing leads, great location, plot points echoing those of "North by Northwest," it all sounds very exciting. But Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck has seemingly achieved the impossible. He found the most useless way of spending 100 million dollars. There is absolutely nothing fun about this supposed thriller. There are two action scenes, both as pathetic and effortless as one another. One sees Depp running on rooftops in his pyjamas. Well, he doesn't run, he jogs. He is chased by men with guns. There is no sense of urgency though, it's slow, lifeless and not in the least bit inventive. It's so useless at creating any sense of pace that sometimes you forget that Depp is actually running for his life. The boat chase is not much better. Through the narrow streams of Venice, boats could have crashed, or at least bumped into something. But no, the boats gently glide along at a morbid pace with both Jolie and Depp looking surprisingly relaxed. Gunshots are fired but the result...wait for it...is a few broken windows. Two boats are tied together. So? When the camera moves so slowly, and when the sequence itself is so unimaginative, it doesn't matter how many boats are involved. It's pure laziness.
Whenever Jolie walks by a crowd of men, they all stop, admire her beauty and can't take their eyes off her. Jolie has rarely looked better in a film - so well-dressed, well-accessorised - but it appears that is all she does in this film. Look fantastic. She's an excellent actress in the right roles, but the only acting skill she gets to show is her English accent, which is actually quite good. Other than that, she stands around in "ravishing" dresses, giving us mysterious stares and ambiguous looks that try to add something juicy into the otherwise dry film. Depp is just the brainless idiot with puppy-dog eyes following Jolie with his tongue hanging out. It's an unclear role and even Depp looks confused as to what the heck he's doing, a mutual feeling that is also shared by the audience.
There is no real spark between the two and the drab script has a lot of responsibility to take. There isn't a single exchange between our two good-looking characters that triggers a laugh, smile or any sense of attraction. Elise asks for his name. He says Frank. She hits back with "that's a terrible name." Was this supposed to be the cornerstone of playful banter? It's not sexy, it's not even remotely funny, and as the film goes on it would be safe to say that the writers simply gave up on trying to give these actors something interesting to share. The pace refuses to move along, as there are awkward pauses, silences, and none of them for good reasons.
And what's up with the ridiculous score? The composer in charge of the soundtrack (James Newton Howard) must have thought that he was providing music for a fairytale romance. A lot of it sounds too light and immature, not cheeky or stylish enough. Aside from not suiting its lavish surroundings, the magnificent stars seem completely separate from the detached score. Even in the "action sequences" the music doesn't even think of coming up with anything remotely exciting, and does nothing to even slightly improve the already struggling action element of the film.
The big twist that attempts to redeem what little dignity left in the film also falls flat as there have been far too many hints and obvious red herrings that make the audience look elsewhere for answers. This is never good since nine times out of ten, the audience will figure out the big mystery long before the film decides to solve it. Was this the most disappointing film of 2010? Most likely. There have been lots of awful films as always, but none came with the same level of expectation "The Tourist" did. Hopefully an ignorable blip on both Jolie and Depp's usually above-average film choices. And as for von Donnersmarck, perhaps he over-extended himself with an alarmingly high budget and didn't really know how to cope with all the Hollywood style. Go back to the place that allowed you to make your outstanding "The Lives of Others." We need more films like that; and you'll be more respected because of it.
I've been waiting a long time for this movie to be released and it seems it has been slow to come to the cinemas in Warsaw. Last Friday evening was the night I had a date with a handsome young guy, aged about 46 and sometimes looks like a pirate. I was a bit reluctant about meeting him again after his escapades in Alice in Wonderland and the reviews I had already read concerning The Tourist had left me feeling unsure of what to expect. Also, that twerp Ricky Gervais didn't help - why he should be an expert film critic and the right to criticise Depp I will never know.
Never mind, on with the date. Location Venice; a very charming city. Main characters; a beautiful, long-legged, plump lipped, Angelina Jolie and a rather podgy looking Johnny Depp.
Plot: Scotland Yard are watching the lovely Elise (Angelina Jolie) as she sits at a cafe reading a note presented in a buff coloured envelope. The letter is from her lover; a bit of a character it seems - he has stolen millions of dollars from an English gangster who now surrounds himself with Russian thugs (spot the cliche). His name is Alexander Pearce but has had to change the look of his face and has spent a few bob on plastic surgery. The letter tells Elise to board a certain train, choose a passenger who has similar features as he had when she last saw him and convince the police who are on the train watching her that he is Alexander Pearce.
After cautiously walking the length and breadth of the train, stopping and staring at a few guys she suddenly notices a guy with crumpled hair, sweet face, reading a spy novel. His name is Frank Tupelo, a maths teacher from sleepy Wisconsin. She can tell instantly when their eyes meet that Frank is the right guy and he will be the one to fall in love with her and follow her to her hotel..........
Let's start with the location. Absolutely stunning and I have to say having been to Venice several times I definitely think that the city looks better on the big screen. Some of the ariel shots are very dazzling. I guess you couldn't choose a better location for a film in this genre which is down as an action/romance although I think it is more of a thriller/romance/comedy.
There are some action scenes but not too loud or overpowering. Some of the scenes are quite comedic really - I mean Depp is never going to be the next James Bond however cute he is - he just doesn't have the nasty face or violent streak. The scenes are mainly chase scenes on the canal with speedboats where he is handcuffed to the steering wheel. Some shooting from the Russian thugs - well, I'm not sure if they are Russian as they were at one time speaking Polish. The Americans wouldn't know the difference, I guess. They think - gangsters - have to be Russian.
Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, the director, wrote the screenplay with Christopher McQuarrie and Julian Fellowes. I thought it was rather good. There are some great one liners delivered by Depp in his slow drawl. I noticed that his voice was different - slower and deeper. My husband reckoned it was because he was speaking in a Wisconsin accent rather than his normal Kentucky accent. Apart from the sharp wit there was quite a lot of soft comedy in the writing - not great laugh out loud moments but soft chuckling moments. Quite a few red herrings thrown in and two great twists in the tale which I didn't get either. Then, I don't usually read or watch thrillers.
Let's start with Angelina Jolie. I knew nothing about her until I saw this film. I've never seen her in anything else. Okay, I read all the gossip about her as a celebrity and know she's married to Brad Pitt - she is isn't she? What did I think? I thought she was amazing. From the moment she sat down in the cafe in Paris, France. Have to laugh - that's what it said on screen Paris, France. Don't the Americans know where Paris is? She held my attention all the time. Not only is she lovely to look at but her figure, her eyes, walk, everything, was magical. She is like an old fashioned movie star, like Sophia Loren or Vivian Leigh. Her language skills are very good too. I loved the way she spoke English in a soft way and her French and Italian accents were spot on. Yes, I was impressed and I thought the interaction with her and Depp was also very good. I had no idea that she is Jon Voight's daughter - Wow - you learn something every day from IMDB.
Well, you have probably guessed that my report of this guy is going to be a glowing one. This is a Depp character like I haven't seen before. Like I said, we have the slow voice, crumpled looking character - still geeky but not too silly. He plays a part where he is quite distant, somewhere else, like he's still grieving for his lost love. Seems to have put on some weight but still very charismatic on screen. Lots of funny scenes in the film; loved the one where he was wearing pyjamas and running along the roof tiles of the most famous hotel in Venice. Some critic reported that he was wearing designer pyjamas - well, if they are, he has wasted his cash. They were awful - made him look porky with a little fat bum and his agility is as bad as Captain Jack's. The most important thing is that I believed he was Frank Tupelo. I was concerned for him - that he had got involved into something he couldn't handle and might get killed. For one hour and 43 minutes I was glued to the screen and didn't eat a boiled sweet, a grain of popcorn or even a peanut.
Don't know much about this guy either but he was great as Inspector John Acheson. Loved the intensity of his role - how he was obsessed with catching Alexander Pierce. He was brilliant at being edgy and not being able to cope with the times when his escapades went wrong.
Birkoff was the nasty piece of work surrounded by thugs with shooters. The guy (Reginald Shaw) who was determined to find Pearce, get his money back and then have him killed. He was really scary and had me cowering at a couple of scenes especially the one with a knife. A well known British actor who excelled in this film as the gangster.
Absolutely stunning. Most cities in the world have amazing places to photograph but Paris and Venice have to have the biggest share of amazing architecture. Love the close ups of the water in Venice and how the camera photographed the buildings above the water line. The detail of the luxurious furnishings in the hotel were superb too as was the filming of the Grand Ball. Top marks.
I know the Tourist isn't a costume drama but it could have been. The quality and stylish design of the clothes Elise and Reginald Shaw wore on set was outstanding as were the silks, velvets, interior design of the cafes, restaurants and hotel. All very Hollywood but I thought very tasteful, like in the 50s.
I even enjoyed the soundtrack and thought the music and songs fitted the various scenes. Loved the track, 'Cat's Pyjamas' and the lovely Katie Melua gets a look in with, 'No Fear of Heights.' Yes, I really did like the soundtrack - much better than the overpowering soundtrack on the last Pirates film.
My favourite quote (taken from IMBD):
Italian policeman 2: You wish to report a murder.
Frank : Attempted murder.
Italian policeman 2: That's not so serious.
Frank : Not when you downgrade it from murder. But when you upgrade it from room service, it's quite serious.
It probably doesn't sound so funny when reading it but if you take a look at the trailer and Frank's (Johnny Depp) face - it's hilarious.
To sum up: I left the cinema very happy. Okay, I wasn't as excited and talking ten to the dozen like I usually am after some of his other movies I have watched at the cinema. The film was absorbing and the story line drew me in. The script must have been good because I was amazed when my husband explained about the ending. I could have kicked myself and thought Doh! Why didn't I get that? Angelina and Johnny were beautiful and charismatic, like movie stars should be. The other members of the cast were well chosen and very endearing and what else can I say about Venice and Paris, in France. Three words; exquisite, dazzling, sensational. Good movie, highly recommended. Ricky Gervais take a hike!
Considering this film was directed by the man who made 'The Lives of Others,' Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, it is surprisingly average. Where 'The Lives of Others' was brilliantly characterised, intelligently written and packed a punch at the end, 'The Tourist' is slightly bland and it's hard to really care about the characters at all.
The basic premise is that a woman named Elise (Angelina Jolie) is being tracked by the police as her lover, Alexander Pierce, stole a substantial amount of money from a mafia gangster. They are desperate to discover his whereabouts, as are the mobsters from whom the money was stolen. Elise uses Frank, an American tourist played by Johnny Depp, as a decoy, by deliberately sitting next to him on a train headed for Venice. She has been instructed by Frank to sit next to somebody who resembles him in appearance, in order to throw the police off his scent.
Unfortunately the plan works all too well, and Frank finds himself being dragged into a dangerous chase as he flees across Venice from the mafia boss and his henchmen.
While this may sound like quite a good idea for an action film, the result is something less than inspiring, since it ends up being less 'action' and more 'smouldering temptress shows how sexy she can be on screen,' with the camera following Jolie around like a lovesick puppy. Let's face it- Jolie is stunning, and generally she pulls this off very well, being so photogenic (or whatever the video camera version of that is). The problem is that in her other films, she usually manages to be sexy yet exciting, getting stuck into the most hair-raising of action sequences with great gusto. Here, she looks attractive...and that's about it. Her character is about as dull as dishwater, and Frank's isn't much more exciting. Plus, there seems to be a fundamental lack of any kind of chemistry between the two. No wonder this got an average IMDb rating of 6 / 10.
Are there any redeeming features though? Well, the plot becomes vaguely interesting right at the end, and despite the lack of character depth of the 2 main characters, Depp does do a less wooden job than Jolie. He at least shows some versatility here, as Frank isn't like any of his previous characters really, and he pulls off the slightly naive tourist role relatively well. With a better script he may have had a chance to shine in this role.
The scenes of Venice will make you want to book a holiday there immediately after watching, and it is entertaining throughout, even if it won't have you gripping the edge of your seat in suspense.
From a cinematographic point of view, this is probably quite a neat piece of film-making, but if you're thinking of splashing out on a ticket to go and see this, thinking you'll get something to the same high standard as The Lives of Others, then be warned- you won't!
Sorry this is such a short review, but it's hard to talk at any length about a film that is neither dreadful, nor brilliant, but distinctly average. See for yourself if you like- it's still a decent way to while away a couple of hours, as it's entertaining enough.