Review – xXx (2002)

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AXN Programmhighlights im Juni: Nervenkitzel von "xXx - Triple X" bis zur World Rally Championship

Apparently, before Vin Diesel was a car-riding expert in the Fast & Furious collection, he was apparently a spy. I’ve always planned to watch xXx, but was never in the right mood to really get into it, nor did I really even know what it was even about apart from being an action film. Unbeknownst to me, that’s mostly all it is in the end, as well. After seeing it, though, I’m a little confused as to how they did a sequel for this movie without Vin Diesel…the title refers to his name.

Xander “XXX” Cage is a thrill seeker who until now has been deemed untouchable by the law. NSA Agent Gibbons forces XXX to cooperate with the government to infiltrate an underground Russian crime ring, and avoid going to prison. Gibbons sends XXX to enter this world of crime undetected where others have failed, using his natural athletic prowess and a whole lot of attitude. Xander must combat an organization led by a clever, ruthless and nihilistic Yorgi whose first target is the city of Prague. Written by Artemis-9 (IMDb)

Do you know what this film reminds me of? Johnny English – just more serious and action-filled…it’s otherwise the same basic movie. Because the NSA has agents undercover, the other side notices their training all the time, which means they need someone who has no NSA training but is still talented in that area all the same. I had no idea that it would go a James Bond-type route, but I’m okay that they did…just a little disappointed in the lack of choices they take. This isn’t just like James Bond, it’s like the ’60s versions with an evil villain that exists just to exist and basically end the world. I’m not here to tell you how to make your movie, but it’s a new millennium and we need villains that make sense.

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When it comes to the people that want to see this film, it’s mostly because of the action and Vin Diesel in the lead…and that’s fine. The action in question is actually fantastic. They did stunts that haven’t ever been attempted in film before, and most of those were done by Diesel himself, and that’s something to notice and commend him on. I mean that, 100%. Here’s my problem. The actual story seemed to be written around the action scenes, as if the action sequences were the first thing they talked about in the writers room. “We want Diesel to drive off a bridge. Now, can we have him jumping over a building on a motorcycle? Great. Oh I have an idea…how about escaping an avalanche?” All great ideas – and it’s like they set them in stone and THEN hashed out an actual story. That’s not creative, nor is it smart writing. It’s writing that ultimately makes a forgettable story with memorable sequences…not the best formula…but at least the action is good..?

xXx is mostly regarded as pretty decent and epic action film that really showcased Vin Diesel early on in his career, and that’s completely true. Unfortunately, it lacks the writing and creativity needed to make it an instant classic. So the more you watch it, the more you’ll yawn unless they throw in random action sequences throughout, which sometimes they do…sometimes they don’t. So it has its positives and negatives. You just have to decide whether you’re a fan or not.

RATING: 6.8/10

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3 thoughts on “Review – xXx (2002)

  1. Nice review. Yeah, I agree with on this. To me, XXX was lackluster in its writing and creativity. Diesel was good in it (a potential franchise for him before finding his groove in the F&F movies).

    Liked by 1 person

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