Dave White
The Tourist Review

Dave's Rating:


Stay home.

Who's In It: Johnny Depp, Angelina Jolie, Paul Bettany, Timothy Dalton

The Basics: Depp is a vacationing math teacher from the Midwest (quit laughing) who finds himself drawn into a web of international intrigue when Jolie, as a Mysterious Lady on a Train, whisks him into her dangerous world of people chasing them everywhere--it's about a large sum of missing money, a very bad guy and his Russian goon squad, sneering Scotland Yard detectives and some fake identities, the way these things always are--and, along the ride, they also find themselves possibly falling in love. Then there's a twist that I won't give away, but you'll figure it out if you're paying even half as much attention to the movie as you are to that box of Sour Patch Kids you're eating.

What's The Deal: Cheeky, sensual, exotic spy thrillers need to spin several plates at once to succeed. They need to star beautiful people who also have the kind of on-screen chemistry that make you believe they're actually doing it in their trailers between shots. They need to make stunning use of their beautiful Euro locations. They need to be witty--these are people who are brilliant at playing cat-and-mouse, after all, aren't they? And they need to be exciting, with twists you don't see coming and a credible amount of suspense. These are the minimum requirements for this genre. And come the end of this month, after Yogi Bear hits theaters, I think if you put this movie head-to-head with that one in a battle over which one displays more of those qualities, the cartoon animals are going to take the prize.

Star Power Outage: You can't really blame Angelina Jolie for her looks or the way she magnetizes your eyeballs when she's on screen. She's got that striking angled face and giant lips and va-va-voom walk, a combination that shouts I WILL DEVOUR YOU! LOOK AT ME WHEN I'M TALKING TO YOU! And it's happening at all times, as though she's incapable of turning it off. So putting her up on screen with just anybody is a big mistake. They disappear next to her. So whose big idea was it to take Johnny Depp--a guy who can hold the camera just as well as she can as long as he's got something big to do with it--and turn him into a shuffling everyman who walks around shrugging his shoulders and pretending to be a nobody schoolteacher? At what point do these two start shooting lasers from their nostrils and exploding buildings with transformer arms that turn to rocket launchers? Or at least make out convincingly? Because that's really what you want from them, and it's exactly what you don't get. Blame the script, the director (Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, Oscar winner for The Lives of Others), the producers and maybe even movie star demands for this or that, but something has gone really, really wrong here.

Sorry, Bad Movie Fans, This One's Not For You, Either: Like Burlesque, it's not howlingly stupid or bad enough to be the kind of awesome fun you have with friends when you're all in the mood to make each other laugh by conducting your own Mystery Science Theater party. It's just something to fall asleep to on late-night cable.


Comments (19)

August - 12-11-2010 9:27 AM
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Yay! MST3K reference!

rick kreher - 12-11-2010 11:04 AM
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should have cast Dolph Lundgren. I'll see him in anything. what an underrated actor.

franzpatrickdotcom - 12-13-2010 11:54 PM
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So much hate toward this movie. It was flawed but 1 star out of 5 seems a bit harsh. I enjoyed it.

knightsbud - 12-14-2010 6:51 PM
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Once again, I took your advice Mr Dave White. You said it was a 1 star movie, so ofcourse that only meant that it was a good movie that both my spouse and I liked. Strange, maybe you are so jealous of Johnny Depp's fame. Oh, by the way, both Johnny Depp and Angeline Jolie were just nomiated for awards. Hum....can you say new job for me?

knightsbud - 12-14-2010 6:52 PM
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Once again, I took your advice Mr Dave White. You said it was a 1 star movie, so ofcourse that only meant that it was a good movie that both my spouse and I liked. Strange, maybe you are so jealous of Johnny Depp's fame. Oh, by the way, both Johnny Depp and Angeline Jolie were just nomiated for awards. Hum....can you say new job for me?

Boop - 12-14-2010 11:17 PM
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I have yet to disagree with any of your reviews, Dave. You're the only critic I trust. :)

mtheaded - 12-15-2010 12:22 PM
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Well, now you've done it! made me so curious I'll have to go see the damn thing, even though I found it lacking even in the trailers. This tetter totter of reviews seems believable however. Angelina can be perfectly arogant and Johnny, oh Johnny, can be such a fool . . . . uh, as actors that is. SO where's the surprise?

john ashfield - 12-16-2010 12:59 PM
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I'm sorry, I can't stop laughing about Johnny Depp being a midwest math teacer....

Poop Stein - 12-16-2010 8:19 PM
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This is an accurate review. AJO is still beautiful and I support her! You go girl!

dcolumbus - 12-17-2010 11:55 AM
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Embarassing movie. Depp was been dissapointing me over and over. And although Angelina is, well, Angelina... she too can't seem to find a role that merits her camera presence.

Edivaldo Araujo - 1-02-2011 1:05 PM
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Hmm, I don't agree entirely with you, because I watched the movie before reading your review, and I tought it was like an "ok" movie, not as great as I expected from the cast they assembled... "Cammon" people it's va va voom Angelina Jolie, and the swaggerlicious Johnny Depp... I would give it 3/5, 1 star is being way too harsh...

Alex - 1-14-2011 6:20 PM
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To add to it, "the Tourist" only captured my attention towards the end when the movie escalates to the plot twist. I found it hard to pay attention to this movie for lack of action and suspense. Jolie definitely needed to have just a wee bit more meat on her bones to accommodate for the uninteresting script. Those sour patches were spot on while I sat through the majority of the movie patiently waiting for something/anything to happen. The rooftop chase heightened the dreary mood of the movie only to be let back down in the following scenes. It was almost as interesting as watching paint dry, almost! From the reviews it seems as if the audience is in for a cunning spy/double agent thriller, but instead we got a long drawn out love story.

Monika - 1-23-2011 6:25 PM
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Dave great review and so accurate,the movie is so boring only the architecture of Venice and the Russian mafia did make this movie watchable.

Rob - 3-22-2011 5:53 AM
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Really, someone enjoyed this movie?? Unoriginal, terrible terrible movie. Jolie and Depp should be ashamed. And they were nominated for awards, so what. That doesn't mean a gOd damn things idiots

Motheus - 3-26-2011 9:16 PM
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I'm literally in the midst of watching this movie in my living room and I just felt compelled to pause and check out your take on this one, Dave. My own impressions are still too fresh for consumption, but I largely agree with your observations. A bewilderingly sub-par turn for the principals and director on this one - it invokes a concentrated malaise within my cinematic sensibilities that resembles nothing in recent memory. Like my movie-going soul is being lightly and repeatedly face-jabbed by a preternaturally long-armed 9 year old girl wearing chloroform-soaked cashmere mittens. Setting aside its various patent failures, this film emanates a remarkably distinct un-remarkableness that is separately fascinating in it's own right, really.

MJ - 10-11-2011 11:08 PM
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Just watched this on tv. Everything about this movie is absolutely horrible. Jolie and Depp are wooden, Paul Bettany - given such a lame supporting role, so unfair, and the slow pace is excruciating. That boat "chase" is in slow motion, right? Most unforgivable is the styling. How they could make Jolie look like a Dynasty reject and Depp look like a pumpkin (bloated and orange), I don't know. Just gazing at them on the screen could overcome the other problems, if they didn't look so ridiculous.

mxh - 8-19-2012 3:37 PM
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Do we have to give this any stars? It was unbelievably inept.

Nanook - 9-11-2012 10:13 AM
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What an appalling waste of time. I turned it off after JD was chased over the Venice rooftops in his dressing gown.....embarrassingly awful. And AJ just has this face liked a smacked arse expression, wandering around thinking "Aren't i gorgeous I don't have to bother even trying to act as I'm so gorgeous". I need more to a movie please...like a decent script and decent direction.

American Fool - 10-02-2014 7:58 AM
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Yeah, I give it 3/5. It's not bad, but lord it's not good. Jolie is gorgeous, and Depp is mildly charming, but there isn't enough chemistry, interaction, etc between the two to justify the shift in their feelings. I mean, sure James Bond just hooks up with every woman he comes across, but nobody believes that there is any relationship there, it's not much more than a hook-up. This is supposed to be so much more than that, but the dialogue, acting and plot just can't carry you to that denouement. I did like the rooftop scene, but there wasn't enough suspenseful fun in the rest of the movie. The movie can't make up it's mind what to do or where to go, and when the movie finally ends, it feels contrived - never mind that I figured out th

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