12th September, 2002Starring:
Vin Diesel, Samuel L Jackson, Asia Argento.Directed by:
Rob CohenProduced by:
Neal H MoritzWritten by:
Vin Diesel stars as former extreme sports athlete Xander "XXX" Cage, notorious for his death defying public stunts. Betting he can succeed where other conventional spies have failed, Xander is recruited by NSA Agent Gibbons (Samuel L. Jackson) to become a different kind of undercover agent. Enlisted for a dangerous covert mission, he must use all his extreme skills to combat a clever, organized, and ruthless enemy far beyond the scope of his experience.
XXX could best be summed up as being Bond with attitude, a fast-paced, visually intoxicating and adrenalin-charged escapist adventure that turns the old secret agent formula on its head. It is also the movie that will finally define star Vin Diesel as a major Hollywood star.
Secret agent films have been around for decades, each one continuing to take advantage of varying generations of audience. Even the Bond films have managed to catch up with the times. XXX is the boldest of them all, however, fuelling a distinct genre with a fresh style of its own, and a kinetic energy, which is breathtaking.
Director Cohen, who took a simple story of illegal drag racing and gave it a visual momentum in creating 'The Fast and the Furious', takes a relatively uncomplicated script by Rich Wilkes and gives it not only visual depth, but a star-making performance by Diesel. The actor gives a sly, funny and charmingly nonchalant performance as the film's anti-hero. As well as being physically appealing, Diesel is clearly an actor of range. He is perfectly balanced by the calmly effective work of Samuel L. Jackson and beautiful European star Asia Argento.
Visually, XXX is breathtaking, from magnificent moments such as an avalanche sequence, to the way in which Cohen utilises the beautiful city of Prague. Featuring a pulsating, hard-edged soundtrack, XXX is a film that moves like a blazing rocket, a consistently energetic and exhilarating piece of dazzling escapism all with its sense of humour attached in the process. As summer comes to an end, XXX is destined for box office glory, which the film duly deserves. To put it succinctly, XXX rocks!
- Paul Fischer