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Châu Belle Dinh,
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In Marseilles (France), skilled pizza delivery boy Daniel who drives a scooter finally has his dreams come true. He gets a taxi license. Caught by the police for a huge speed infraction, he will help Emilien, a loser inspector who can't drive, on the track of German bank robbers, so he doesn't lose his license and his dream job. Written by
Cyril Morcrette <email@example.com>
I normally avoid action films and car chases bore me, but I watched Taxi on a friend's recommendation and have to say that it is one of the best films I've seen in a long time. Everything about it is pure class which may be something to with it being French. The premise of the film is beautifully simple - a speed-freak taxi driver Daniel and an inept policeman have to work together to catch some bank robbers. The relatively trivial nature of their mission is the perfect vehicle (excuse the pun) for the ever-so French humour of the script. They aren't out to save the world or stop evil for the good of all mankind (as is too often the case in American action films), but both want to stop the criminals for their own purely selfish reasons. In this setting the witty banter of the heroes is perfectly natural, especially compared with the cliched one-liners said in the face of doom found in most films in this genre.
A mismatched pair of heroes is pretty much standard in action films (Lethal Weapon being the most famous case), but here is works well as they manage to be more than just stereotypes and are believable even if their circumstances aren't. Both characters come across as real people, flawed, but likeable, especially the roguishly charming Daniel.
Despite being an action film, special-effects are kept to a minimum and although they are a large part of the film, the high speed car sequences are never self-indulgent, peppered with humour and brilliantly directed so as to hold the attention of even of the most "seen it all before" viewers (i.e. me).
All in all a refreshing change from Hollywood comedy or action films and one which I would happily watch again and again.
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