Remember when exotic women with foreign accents were cinematic objects of lust? There was a time when their sultry, velvet tones, halting sentences and occasional poor word choice were enough to ignite a fire in the loins of any red-blooded man seated in the audience, a characteristic that was exploited with pinpoint accuracy by several Bond films and uncomfortably employed in more questionable fare such as Adrian Lyne’s remake of ‘Lolita’.
Unfortunately, the producers of Transporter 3 made the ridiculous assumption that if a slight accent is hot, an incomprehensibly thick one is even better, resulting in one of the worst mis-castings in the history of cinema. Natalya Rudakova stars as the female lead opposite Jason Statham’s character of Frank Martin in what was not only her first ever appearance in film, but most likely also her first ever attempt at speaking English. Her inability to articulate even the simplest of words had me wondering if the film’s backers received a sizable tax break for hiring a retard to masquerade as an actress, since every word to spill out of Rudakova’s mouth might as well have been spoken by an early-90’s text-to-speech computer program. For those of you who have ever fantasized about putting Corky from ‘Life Goes On’ in a dress and then asking him to pretend to be Russian, this is your movie.
The most beautiful thing about Transporter 3 is that it just keeps giving. Not only did Rudakova’s accent have me praying for an early-onset myocardial infarction, but the sheer ridiculousness of the film’s dialogue added an even greater urgency to my desire for death to transport me to a place where ill-conceived sequels never leave the drug-addled brain of film executives on the tail end of an eastern block bender. The memory of Rudakova cheerlessly list the ingredients of the least interesting post-Soviet gastronomical abortions like a child dutifully rattling off state capitals at a geography bee is one of those things I would like to have singed from my brain by a very long, very thin and very hot steel needle.
Combine all of this with the fact that the director (whose only saving grace is that his surname is ‘Megaton’) is a former graffiti artist who turned to episodic television when he discovered that fucking around with paint cans doesn’t pay the bills, and you have a pretty good understanding of why the film’s editing jumps around like your meth-addicted daughter’s eyes when you are writing her yet another ‘rent check’. If you entered the theatre looking forward to enjoying some of the excellent fight choreography from Corey Yuen, prepare to be disappointed by a camera that is focused so tightly on Statham that I swear I could see his lips count off the seconds as he moved from position to position during each combat scene.
There are some films that are such unmitigated disasters that they cause you to quietly compile a list, while you sit there in the audience, of the quickest and most creative ways that you could end your own life and therefore escape the spectacle in front of you. At times during Transporter 3 I considered sharpening my soda straw to a fine point and performing some simple brain surgery through my nasal cavity, breaking my own neck on the seat in front of me, and combining my Coke with the full pound of Pop Rocks I keep on me at all times in case I am ever cornered by Carrot Top. Sadly, the film ended before I could enact any of my carefully laid plans, leaving me to wait for the bus outside the theatre and watch all of the local teens get picked up by their own personal ‘transporters’ – a.k.a. ‘mom.’
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