THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED | REVIEW & GIVEAWAY

THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED is the fourth movie in the TRANSPORTER franchise. Sadly this is the first one without Jason Statham in the lead and we get Ed Skrein starring. You may know Ed, he was in GAME OF THRONES as Daario Naharis and left the show to get this leading role. Kernel John heads out to review this one and thanks to the peeps at ICON MOVIES we have 5x double passes up for grabs to the movie which releases this Thursday September 3 in Australia. This will be a quick comp, literally giving tickets away to the first five people who enter as need to send tickets by Wednesday at the latest. The movie is rated MA15+ and runs for 96mins. Enjoy John’s review………..all the best………..JK.

 

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THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | MOVIE POSTER IMAGE

 

BY JOHN MCPARLAND

Franchise creator and producer Luc Besson brings us the fourth instalment of his action packed, motor-headed madness TRANSPORTER series, in the refresh film THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED.  Slated as the first in a new trilogy, this movie sees reluctant antihero Frank Martin once more in the wrong place at the wrong time, forced to drive, punch and sex his way out his predicament.

Martin, played by Ed Skrein (Daario Naharis from the GAME OF THRONES television series – the forgettable Daario from the third season, not the awesome Daario from the fourth season onwards when they changed actors to Michiel Huisman), is contacted by sexy femme fatale Anna, played by Loan Chabanol, to transport herself and two packages through the beautiful French Riviera.  Meeting her at the agreed time outside a bank, Martin initially refuses to follow through with the deal when he realises that Anna’s “packages” are actually two other women.  He later relents when informed by Anna that Martin’s father has been taken hostage by a fourth member of the group and will be killed if Martin does not deliver the three women to their destination.  As sirens begin to blare from the building and bank staff indicate the occupants of Martin’s car as having just robbed the joint, Martin puts the pedal to the floor to escape the pursuing authorities.

Later on, Martin discovers that the women are actually sex slaves, forced into the prostitution ring by brutal Russian gangster Karasov many years ago.  Tired of being used and abused, the women have decided on a dangerous and deadly course of action: to not only escape from the clutches of their captor, but to bring his organisation to its knees as well.  Caught in the middle of their plot, Martin has no choice but to continue assisting Anna and her cohorts if he ever hopes to save his father’s life.

 

the transporter refueled movie image
THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | BAD LADIES IN GAS MASKS WALKING OVER BODIES ON A BLUE LIT DANCE FLOOR

 

This is a much slower film than the previous ones in the series, if such a thing can be said in relation to a movie all about fast cars.  The pace is a little off, and the story plods along at times.  When the action does kick in, the speed still does not really ramp up to accommodate.  At one point, Martin puts his beautiful Audi S8 in first gear, gets out of the vehicle, and proceeds to individually pummel a dozen or so gangsters, as the car idly and anonymously rolls along behind him, instead of simply just running all the bad guys over.  All the while, the women inside the car are screaming and freaking out for no apparent reason, as Martin casually dispatches one enemy after the other.  Perhaps they were afraid of the injuries they might sustain in a high-speed crash should the sedan happen to roll up to a largish pebble and come to a gentle stop?  Either way, the scene itself was like a snapshot for the entire plot: slow and pointless with the occasional flurry of fists.

Speaking of fists, the fight scenes themselves also left a lot to be desired.  The choreography was very average and at times even cartoonish.  Martin’s witty one-liners at the end of a fight were so bad that even Horatio Caine from CSI: MIAMI would be ashamed.  I heard many a chuckle of incredulity from the other critics around me throughout the majority of the battles, so I clearly was not alone in my disappointment of the scenes.

 

the transporter refueled movie image
THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | FRANK MARTIN (ED SKREIN) IS YUMMY 🙂

 

The acting overall was also very poor.  None of the stars had any real screen presence and though Anna was the one constantly manipulating Martin for his help, at no point did Chabanol ever portray any realistic sense of control.  Skrein is likewise quite weak, so focused on constantly being cool, calm and collected under any amount of pressure that he often comes across as wooden and bland.  The rest of the film’s supporting cast are forgettable, but what was worse was the fact that a large portion of the film seemed to be terribly dubbed, which was incredibly frustrating to watch.  The one exception to this acting pool of underwhelming normality was Martin’s father, Frank Martin Sr., played by Ray Stevenson (THOR), who with his dry wit and polished air of sophistication reminded me a lot of Sam Axe from the BURN NOTICE television series, and was as a result quite redeeming.

Director Camille Delamarre’s inexperience clearly shows through in this, his second feature film.  Poor acting, poor editing, poor direction and with only average car chases, THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED fails mightily to live up to the name of its predecessors.  I am unsure as to the reason why Jason Statham was not recast in the role of Frank Martin, but his exclusion left an immature cast with the heroic task of lifting a poorly constructed story above base mediocrity.  The film tries far too hard to drip feed audience members with information on Anna and her group’s plan, in the hope no doubt of maintaining suspense, which ultimately leads to a weak and drawn out plot that waits too long to really hook me in.  See this for some lovely shots of the French coastline and some gimmicky car chases, but only if you are already a hardcore fan of the genre.

 

1 and a Half Pops

 

With special thanks to ICON MOVIES to win one of the 5X double passes to THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED  you need to either like and share/ retweet this post on Facebook/Twitter/ Google+/ Pinterest/ LinkedIn/ Flipboard or Instagram (all the links to follow us are on the top right of homepage), you then need to leave a comment below stating the answer/s to the following questions:

What is your favourite CHASE movie and why? I am going with THE FUGITIVE or RUN LOLA RUN or even THELMA & LOUISE – all good and so many chase movies out there.

If you do not have social media then get with the times – you can still enter, leave your entry below and email me at jking@saltypopcorn.com.au telling me you don’t have social media (you still need to enter on the website).

Prizes will no longer be awarded to first in first served. It will now be a game of skill and selected purely on the thoughts of the judges, said judges being the Salty Kernels.

The prizes will be sent ASAP!! Good luck! Oh, and minor housekeeping – huge apologies for overseas readers, this competition is only available to Australian residents.