7.2/10
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145 user 171 critic

JCVD (2008)

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2:21 | Trailer

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Release Date: August 2

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Jean-Claude Van Damme gets involved in a bank robbery with hostages situation and reflects about his life during it.

Director:

Mabrouk El Mechri

Writers:

Mabrouk El Mechri (scenario), Frédéric Benudis (in collaboration with) | 4 more credits »
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jean-Claude Van Damme ... JCVD
Valérie Bodson Valérie Bodson ... Veuve Film Budapest
Hervé Sogne Hervé Sogne ... Lieutenant Smith
Rock Chen Rock Chen ... Réalisateur asiatique
Huifang Wang Huifang Wang ... Traductrice asiatique
John Flanders ... Avocat ex-Femme
Renata Kamara Renata Kamara ... Juge Tribunal Los Angeles
Mourade Zeguendi Mourade Zeguendi ... Client Vidéo club
Vincent Lecuyer ... Vendeur Vidéo Club
Jenny De Chez Jenny De Chez ... Taxiwoman JCVD
Patrick Steltzer Patrick Steltzer ... Policier 1
Bernard Eylenbosch Bernard Eylenbosch ... Technicien Telecom
François Damiens ... Bruges
Pascal Lefebvre Pascal Lefebvre ... Képi 2
Jacky Lambert Jacky Lambert ... Képi 3
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Storyline

Between his tax problems and his legal battle with his wife for the custody of his daughter, these are hard times for the action movie star who finds that even Steven Seagal has pinched a role from him! In JCVD, Jean-Claude Van Damme returns to the country of his birth to seek the peace and tranquility he can no longer enjoy in the United States. Written by Wismerhill & Redking

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Be Aware See more »

Genres:

Action | Comedy | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Belgium | Luxembourg | France

Language:

French | English

Release Date:

2 August 2019 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ж.К.В.Д. See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

€10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

€524,109 (France), 8 June 2008, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$20,119, 9 November 2008, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$470,691, 18 January 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

According to Mabrouk El Mechri in a Q&A at the Toronto International Film Festival, about 70% of the film was scripted and the other 30% was improvised by the actors. See more »

Goofs

Police chief Bruges tells Van Damme the decision to act was GIGN's move, not his. GIGN (Groupe d'Intervention de la Gendarmerie Nationale - French SWAT) exists in France but not in Belgium where the movie story takes place. In Belgium, police's tactical unit is called ESI (Escadron Special d'Intervention). See more »

Quotes

JCVD: This movie is for me. There we are, you and me. Why did you do that? Or why did I do that? You made my dream come true. I asked for it. I promised you something in return and I haven't delivered yet. You win, I lose. Unless... the path you've set for me is full of hurdles where the answer comes before the question. Yeah, I do that. Now I know why. It's the cure, from what I've seen here. It all makes sense. It makes sense to those who understand. So... America, poverty, stealing to eat... ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Gaumont logo has an animated Jean-Claude Van Damme appear in the logo and deliver roundhouse kicks to the boy and the sunflower. See more »


Soundtracks

Hard Times
(Curtis Mayfield)
© Warner-Tamerlane Publishing
With Permission from Warner Chappell Music France
Performed by Baby Huey & The Baby Sitters
(p) 1971 Rhino Entertainment Co. for the United States and WEA International for the world outside of the U.S.
Courtesy of Warner Music France, A Warner Music Group Company
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Interesting movie, with a terrific performance by Van Damme.
5 June 2008 | by SqueeleSee all my reviews

Interesting concept from french director Mabrouk el Mechri: real action star Jean Claude Van Damme is engaged into a bitter legal battle for his daughter's custody. Said daughter is mocked by her classmates for her father's antics, and prefers staying with her mother. Ridiculed by the media and smarty-pants naysayers, condemned to shoot sub-par B-movies in eastern Europe, almost broke and devastated by his little girl's condition, Jean Claude flies back to his native Belgium in order to find solace. After an odd encounter with small time crooks, his life and perception by the public will be changed forever.

From a direction/scriptwriting point of view, the movie is somewhat lacking focus. It's relying a bit too much on inside jokes and heist movie clichés, for better or worse. There are some truly great moments (the opening scene is hilarious - any scene using Baby Huey's "Hard Times" tune cannot be bad anyway; the court scenes are cleverly written and the very last shot finds a perfect balance of emotion without being overblown or tear-jerking) and the whole film deserves praise for being original and clever. However it stretches some scenes way too much, uses an awful bleached color scheme that could turn off some people (it's just a detail, but it annoyed me throughout the whole screening) and uses unnecessary flashbacks instead of sticking to a more tight storytelling, which could've benefited the movie in my humble opinion.

However, these little flaws are nothing compared to the enormous heart this movie displays. Jean Claude Van Damme may not be Daniel Day Lewis or Sean Penn, but he gives an astounding performance in this film. He's very comfortable in the comical scenes, but his acting chops really shine when the movie gets emotional. His long monologue, looking at the camera, and the audience (and perhaps even God) is nothing short of amazing. In his own words, he really begs for a second chance not only in his career, but in life. He's incredibly moving (acting in his native language helps a lot) and above all doesn't try to pretend he's something more than a washed up movie star, with a somewhat limited vocabulary. He just asks for one more chance, and judging by this flick he truly deserves it.

Overall, a nice surprise for those unfamiliar with "the Muscles from Brussels" and a refreshing comedy. Except a few complaints about the pace and the direction it's a highly recommended movie. And hopefully the beginning of a new career for JCVD.


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