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Hubert is a French policeman with very sharp methods. After being forced to take 2 months off by his boss, who doesn't share his view on working methods, he goes back to Japan, where he ... See full summary »

Director:

Gérard Krawczyk

Writer:

Luc Besson

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jean Reno ... Hubert Fiorentini
Ryôko Hirosue ... Yumi Yoshimido
Michel Muller ... Maurice 'Momo'
Carole Bouquet ... Sofia
Yoshi Oida ... Takanawa
Christian Sinniger Christian Sinniger ... Le Squale
Alexandre Brik Alexandre Brik ... Irène
Jean-Marc Montalto Jean-Marc Montalto ... Olivier (as Jean Marc Montalto)
Véronique Balme Véronique Balme ... Betty
Fabio Zenoni Fabio Zenoni ... Josy
Haruhiko Hirata Haruhiko Hirata ... Ishibashi
Michel Scourneau Michel Scourneau ... Van Eyck (as Mikhel Scourneau)
Jacques Bondoux Jacques Bondoux ... Del Rio
Osamu Tsuruya Osamu Tsuruya ... Douanier 1
Akihiro Nishida Akihiro Nishida ... Douanier 2
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Storyline

Hubert is a French policeman with very sharp methods. After being forced to take 2 months off by his boss, who doesn't share his view on working methods, he goes back to Japan, where he used to work 19 years ago, to settle the probate of his girlfriend who left him shortly after marriage without a trace. There he mets his former colleague Momo and his daughter Yumi who he did not know was ever born. Hubert eventually finds out why his girlfriend left him and the reason becomes his and his new daughters problem. Written by Schwarz

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

For those who take their action raw. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France | Japan

Language:

French | Japanese

Release Date:

31 October 2001 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Vasabi See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

€15,300,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,018,226 (France), 2 November 2001

Opening Weekend USA:

$17,560, 29 September 2002, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$81,525, 20 October 2002
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the arcade, the game that all the young characters convince Hubert ('Jean Reno') to play is "Dance Dance Revolution". Before you see the DDR machine (it's a 5th Mix), many of the other music-related games that are shown are also part of the Bemani series, including Beatmania and many others. The song that the characters play is 'Dive' by BeForU, and Jean Reno's character does fail on the easiest difficulty level (Basic Mode, known in more recent generations of the game as Light Mode). See more »

Goofs

There is a scene where Hubert tips the bellhop. Tipping is not customary in Japan, and unless they have worked with Westerners for a long time, most Japanese feel uncomfortable receiving gratuities. See more »

Quotes

Douanier 2: You do have a reputation, Mr. Fiorentini. Why are you here in Tokyo? Working?
Hubert Fiorentini: Vacation. But don't worry, I won't be long.
Maurice 'Momo': That's right. With him nothing takes long.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Weakest link: Hitori gachi no hôsoku: Episode #1.1 (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Dive
Performed by BeForU
Written and mixed by Naoki Maeda
Extracted from album "BeForU First Album" and "Dance Dance Revolution 5th Mix OST"
©2001 by Konami
Played on the arcade scene
See more »

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User Reviews

Entertaining, with a nice blend of French/Japanese Sensibilities
10 July 2002 | by garyjwmsSee all my reviews

As others have commented, this is certainly light entertainment, not heavy on elaborate plot lines. I actually saw this movie today on a flight from Japan, and found it delightful. It certainly is a film that was pitched to a French Audience, tossing in simplified bits of Japanese pop culture (Witness: I have never encountered so many Japanese that could speak French, as in this movie). Nevertheless this is what I liked about the movie:

1. The interplay between Fiorentino (Jean Reno) and his sidekick Momo (Michel Muller) was consistently humorous throughout, with Muller delivering the punchline, and nearly upstaging Reno throughout. My favorite scene is when Fiorentino is eating generous gobs of Wasabi (hence the name of the film), and Momo, not wanting to be outdone by his mentor, nearly gags to death on the stuff. I was laughing out loud -- maybe because it reminds me too vividly of the first time I ever ate sushi, and nearly died doing the same thing as Momo!!

2. Ryoko Hirosue, who plays Yumi, the previously unknown daughter to Fiorentini, is one of the current hot young faces in Japan, and has appeared in many TV dramas and movies. She certainly provides all the eye candy I could ever wish for in this film. But I must admit a certain new found-respect for her acting abilities, as she pulled off her lines in French flawlessly, while maintaining her trademark cuteness and capturing the carefree attitude of today's Japanese youth. She provided a foil of a different sort for Reno, her bright colors (pink hair, pink everything) offering a striking contrast to Reno's darker, demure look.

The Yakuza were portrayed as mindless goons in this film, and there are certainly better films out there if you want to know more about Yakuza, but it appeared that they played their role, which was to showcase Reno's machismo, in a humorous way, something along the lines of Jackie Chan films -- they are more like props in the film than anything else.

All in all, I was entertained by this film, which is all I was looking for during my 11 hours crossing the Pacific.


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