Taxi 2
Shaken and stirred. Emilien (Diefenthal) holds on tight...
dir Gerard Krawczyk
scr Luc Besson
with Samy Naceri, Frederic Diefenthal, Emma Sjoberg, Bernard Farcy, Jean-Christophe Bouvet, Marion Cotillard, Sebastien Thiery, Marc Faure, Edouard Montoute, Tsuyu Shimizu, Philippe Du Janerand, Michel Muller
release 29.Jun.01
France/00 1h22

3 out of 5 stars
R E V I E W   B Y   R I C H   C L I N E
The writer-producer and seven cast members are all back for this sequel to 1999's enjoyably wacky French action comedy ... with more of the same. And unlike most American action movies, this one knows it's mindless and stupid, and revels in it. Boy racer Daniel (Naceri) is still driving his souped-up taxi at mind-boggling speeds through the streets of Marseilles (the opening scene is terrific). And timid cop Emilien (Diefenthal) is still trying to pass his driving test, still in love with his gorgeous leggy coworker (Sjoberg) and still far more intelligent than his overachieving boss (Farcy). The story all takes place the day Daniel's girlfriend (Cotillard) introduces him to her father (Bouvet), a very serious general with responsibility for a visiting Japanese minister. Soon Daniel is sucked into the whole thing--working with Emilien to outwit the Yakuza terrorists, rescue the hostages and of course save France's dignity.

No it never makes any sense at all, and we never even see the villains, let alone understand what they're up to. This cheerfully anarchic comedy is all about forward motion. It never stops to explain anything ... because nothing matters. The actors are all dead-on, giving us just enough to keep the characters interesting and engaging, but never trying too hard to deliver anything Deep and Meaningful. No time for that nonsense. Krawczyk directs like he has to be somewhere in 90 minutes, racing through the convoluted plot in a brisk one hour 22 minutes and packing in the action, romance and comedy so tightly that we never stop to realise that there's nothing whatsoever holding it together. The car chase scenes in Marseilles and Paris are spectacular, coherent and very funny. And Besson's script has just enough clever wit to keep your brain in gear amid all the silliness. And to leave you looking forward to Taxi 3.
language, themes, vulgarity cert 15 20.Jun.01

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2001 by Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall