The Tourist Trap

Film Review: THE TOURIST

My first film for the year and unfortunately it is a dud. Not a disaster, just a boring dud.

A glossy studio romance/thriller in the old Hollywood style with 2 major movie stars and a support cast of reliable actors. Glamourous locations (Paris & Venice) and glamourous frocks. What went wrong? I have no idea, but the result of all the talent behind the camera and in front adds up to a laboured mess. A stupid plot and a pace that adds up to Inertia with a capital I.

I went along because I could not resist watching actors I admire in locations I love and the promise of old Hollywood style filmaking. Didn’t happen 😦

The stars Angelina Jolie & Johnny Depp are superb actors, the director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck gave us an impressive debut with his Oscar winning German film “The Lives Of Other”, and the writers involved have to their credit “The Usual Suspects” & “Gosford Park” (both Oscar winners) and the director had a hand in it as well. Oscar glory it is not, more like a Razz award possibly.

The plot has a femme fatale latching on to the ordinary American and enticing him into her web of espionage – I think? Oh and there is a scene where the baffled hero jumps through a canvas awning in a fruit market whilst being chased by henchmen – Russian ones too! You get the drift? CLICHE upon CLICHE.

To see Miss Jolie flounder (she is good at the pose and pout though) is a disaster and to see Mr. Depp completely miss the point of his character is a travesty.

Paul Bettany is wasted as a Scotland Yard cop and Steven Berkoff is so mild as the gangster figure it is baffling. How can one make Berkoff dull?

The good points of the film – well the locations and the camparis, shame we didn’t get to see some food, even with 2 scenes set in dining situations. Food porn might have helped a tad. But in all honesty it looks like Miss Jolie doesn’t eat anyhow. Colleen Atwood’s costumes do look fabulous and the second unit shots of Venice are enticing. Alas a good film it does not make.

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