7.1/10
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146 user 173 critic

JCVD (2008)

Trailer
2:21 | Trailer
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:

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:

EUR10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$20,119, 9 November 2008

Gross USA:

$470,691

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,342,211
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

Jean-Claude Van Damme actually has a son, but it was changed in the movie to a daughter for legal reasons. Mabrouk El Mechri claims the daughter's name, Gloria, came to him because he was listening to the Van Morrison song of the same name. 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: Once in the film "Hard Target", I took a shot from a blank. It took salts to reanimate me.
Arthur: "Hard Target"! John Woo! What an ass!
JCVD: Don't say that!
Arthur: C'mon, Jean-Claude, wait a sec!
[to the hostages, referring to Van Damme]
Arthur: He's the one who brought him to the US. Without him, he'd still be filming pigeons in Hong Kong!
[to Van Damme]
Arthur: And then what? He drops you!
JCVD: At least, he did "Face/Off".
Arthur: So what? He could've picked you!
[...]
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 »

Connections

References Dog Day Afternoon (1975) 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

"Shooting pigeons . . ."
28 November 2008 | by jdesandoSee all my reviews

"He'd still be shooting pigeons in Hong Kong," says one of the players In JCVD about director John Woo's debt to action star Jean-Claude Van Damme for their 1993 collaboration, Hard Target. Making that film may have been JCVD's greatest contribution to modern cinema although the current film with his initials in the title is more interesting than any previous kick-butt martial arts flick of his I can remember.

The story's framing device is Van Damme's fictional character of the same name unwittingly becoming a hostage in a bank robbery where his inability to extricate himself and the other hostages is a commentary on the impotence in real life of the mythical hero on the screen. The gritty, de-saturated look inside and outside the bank reminds me of the urban realism of Sidney Lumet's bank-heist Dog Day Afternoon. There's even a stringy-haired thug, but Van Damme is no Dustin Hoffman.

In this satire of his mercurial career as an action star, Van Damme ironically manages a mini-Mickey Rourke comeback by expressing feelings for his daughter and for the lost glamorous life of the Muscles from Brussels. His taciturn, expressionless persona is exactly what the satire needs to move it from a comedy about celebrity to a serious attempt to throw his identity into the existential arena. Indeed one long take in which he tearfully philosophizes about his troubled life is either ludicrous or a rather nice reflection on the vagaries of fame, albeit low rent. The other long take during the titles shows the aging hero fighting his way through a gauntlet of bad guys in a current movie. It's not bad given how bad Stallone could be in the same situation.

Van Damme has had real-life difficulties getting custody of his daughter and righting his tax problems, so JCVD is an apt imagining of his troubles. At some moments he does quite well taking his acting where it has never gone before. That he recently lost a role to Stephen Seagal, who agreed to cut his pony tail for the part, is less an indictment of Jean-Claude than it is a commentary on the vagaries of showbiz heroism.

"Sic transit gloria mundi."


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