Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Spy Next Door:Film Review

Cast: Jackie Chan, Amber Valletta
Direction: Brian Levant
Genre: Drama
Duration: 1 hour 45 minutes
Critic Rating: **1/2

Story: Former CIA spy, Bob Ho has a strange new assignment. He must play nanny to his comely neighbour's kids and ensure they go about their routine business rightly. Sure enough, this turns it to be more difficult than spying, specially since there are a bunch of Russian terrorists lurking around.

Movie Review: There's something about Jackie Chan. Something sweet and sincere that makes him eminently watchable even though he remains deadpan for most parts of his films and his action cuts follow a similar let's-defy-gravity ring to them. Nevertheless, he strikes an instant chord as the entertainer with a zing.

Here, you are willing to watch him play mommy -- and daddy -- to three kids, teaching them how to tackle the usual business of life: school, dating, bullying, bedtime and sibling strife. But he promises more than a domesticated Chan. For, when he's not singing Chinese lullabies to the little one or tutoring the 10 year-old geek on girls, he's doing his usual thing. Like, swinging across precipices, sliding down escalators, kick boxing the unknown assailant as he tries to save his newfound family from a bunch of Russian terrorists who have discovered a new bacteria that will eat up all the oil in the world. Chan must not only save the kids, he must save the world's oil too, as also his endangered romance with the kid's pretty mommy who's livid with him after she learns he's not just the nice guy next door.

Nothing original and not quite quintessential Chan -- the action here is muted -- this one's only for diehard Jackie buffs.
(Nikhat Kazmi,TOI,Delhi,16.1.10)

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